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Achievement in national scholastic examinations and its link with measured cognitive ability among a representative Irish sample
O'Connell, Michael F.
The paper examines the relationship between cognitive ability at approximately seventeen years of age and academic achievement in a nationwide set of examinations taken prior to this time. The sample comprised 6,216 children who participated in wave 3 of the Growing Up in Ireland (GUI) longitudinal study. Other variables assessed included gender, personality measures, household income, parental educational achievement, and school attributes. Up to ten variables made a statistically significant contribution in explaining achievement, but cognitive ability was by far the most important, followed by gender. Entering a cognitive ability measure taken in wave 2 of the longitudinal survey (four years previously) instead of wave 3 produced an almost identical outcome in a multiple regression. While boys outperformed girls on the cognitive measure, girls outperformed boys, with a small effect size, in educational achievement; this might be explained by girls’ higher scores on the dimension, ‘conscientiousness’. Household income was only modestly associated with educational achievement.
Keyword(s): Intelligence; School tests; Family background; Gender; Household income
Publication Date:
Type: Working paper
Peer-Reviewed: Unknown
Language(s): English
Institution: University College Dublin
First Indexed: 2019-05-11 06:31:02 Last Updated: 2019-09-28 06:17:06