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22-09-2020 | Empirical Research

Unpacking Racial/Ethnic Differences in the Associations between Neighborhood Disadvantage and Academic Achievement: Mediation of Future Orientation and Moderation of Parental Support

Tijdschrift:
Journal of Youth and Adolescence
Auteurs:
Yunyu Xiao, Meghan Romanelli, Carolina Vélez-Grau, Michael A. Lindsey
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Abstract

Despite the extensive literature on the deleterious effects of perceived neighborhood disadvantage on academic achievement, there is a dearth of information on racial/ethnic differences in the underlying roles of future orientation and parental support that may mediate or moderate this association. Using data from 3618 students in grades 6–9 (50% female, Meanage = 12.9 [1.3], 6.99% Black, 10.39% Hispanic/Latino, 82.61% White) in two communities in North Carolina during 2009-2014 who completed the School Success Profile, a self-report social environmental assessment, this study conducted multiple group analyses across three racial/ethnic groups (Black, Hispanic/Latino, White), revealing that perceived neighborhood disadvantage was associated with lower future orientation, which in turn was related to poorer academic achievement. The mediating effects were stronger among Black youth compared to White and Hispanic/Latino adolescents. Adolescents with high parental support were minimally affected by perceived neighborhood disadvantage. The findings identify nuanced racial/ethnic disparities in perceived neighborhood influences on academic achievement and raise important intervention targets to promote academic achievement among disadvantaged subgroups.

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