The influence of socio-demographics and school factors on GCSE attainment: results from the first record linkage data in Northern Ireland

Erin Early, Sarah Miller, Laura Dunne, John Moriarty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
7 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Socio-demographic background and school-level factors are influential on an individual’s educational outcomes. However, limited research has had the ability to examine the impact of a pupil’s socio-demographic profile and school-level factors, whilst accounting for the multidimensional structure of socio-economic status. Using data that combined the Census (2011), School Leavers Survey and School Census for the first time in Northern Ireland (n = 61,373), multilevel modelling was executed to examine the associations between educational attainment (GCSE score), a pupil’s socio-demographic profile (socio-economic status, gender and religious affiliation) and school-level factors (school type and management structure). The findings from this study highlight: the multidimensionality and hierarchy of socio-economic effects; the prevalence of a gender effect; variability in the influence of religious affiliation; the need for a nuanced approach when considering school-level factors, and the importance of interaction terms for an in-depth understanding of attainment trends.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)171-189
Number of pages19
JournalOxford Review of Education
Volume49
Issue number2
Early online date22 Feb 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished online - 22 Feb 2022

Keywords

  • Socio-economic status
  • gender
  • religious affiliation
  • school type
  • attainment
  • administrative data

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