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ERIC Number: EJ1201268
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2019-Feb
Pages: 34
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0272-4316
A National Sample of Eighth-Grade Students: The Impact of Middle Grade Schools on Academic and Psychosocial Competence
Cappella, Elise; Schwartz, Kate; Hill, Jennifer; Kim, Ha Yeon; Seidman, Edward
Journal of Early Adolescence, v39 n2 p167-200 Feb 2019
This study evaluates the effect of attending a U.S. public middle or junior high school as compared with a K-8 school on eighth graders' academic and psychosocial outcomes. In a national sample, we conducted propensity score weighted regression analysis. Initial findings indicated that for eighth-grade students, attending a middle or junior high school negatively affected teacher- and self-reported reading/writing competence. After applying population weights, only reading self-concept remained negatively affected by middle school enrollment. Exploratory analysis revealed the negative effects of attending a middle grade school may be present only for the students who enter kindergarten not at risk as measured by socioeconomic status (SES) or academic performance. Taken together, results suggest that negative impacts of middle grade schooling may be limited to teacher- and self-reported reading/writing competence, more pronounced in middle versus junior high school, and more salient for less disadvantaged students. Implications for theory, policy, and practice are discussed.
SAGE Publications. 2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320. Tel: 800-818-7243; Tel: 805-499-9774; Fax: 800-583-2665; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Middle Schools; Secondary Education; Junior High Schools; Grade 8; Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Institute of Education Sciences (ED)
Authoring Institution: N/A
IES Funded: Yes
Grant or Contract Numbers: R305B080019