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ERIC Number: EJ980228
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 63
ISSN: ISSN-0957-8234
The Effects of Academic Optimism on Elementary Reading Achievement
Bevel, Raymona K.; Mitchell, Roxanne M.
Journal of Educational Administration, v50 n6 p773-787 2012
Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to explore the relationship between academic optimism (AO) and elementary reading achievement (RA). Design/methodology/approach: Using correlation and hierarchical linear regression, the authors examined school-level effects of AO on fifth grade reading achievement in 29 elementary schools in Alabama. Findings: Correlational analysis revealed that AO was positively correlated with RA (r=0.78, p less than 0.01), as were all the components of AO, namely: collective efficacy (r=0.70, p less than 0.01); faculty trust in students and parents (r=0.83, p less than 0.01); and academic emphasis (r=0.58, p less than 0.01). Percent free and reduced lunch, which was a proxy for socio-economic status (SES), was negatively correlated with all the variables in the study. Hierarchical linear regression revealed that academic optimism had a significant effect on RA (b=0.52, p less than 0.01) and accounted for approximately 18 per cent of the variance in reading achievement above the effects of SES. Research limitations/implications: Limitations include the small sample size of 29 schools and the fact that these schools were a part of a sample of convenience. Findings support the conceptualization that AO has a positive effect on RA. Practical implications: While SES has been often seen as an insurmountable factor, this research suggests that the contextual conditions of trust, efficacy, and academic emphasis create an environment conducive for higher academic achievement, despite the level of poverty in the school. Originality/value: The paper confirms prior studies that have found AO to be linked to achievement and further demonstrates the positive relationships between AO and RA in a sample of elementary schools. (Contains 5 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 5
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Alabama