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Title: Can higher education compensate for society? Modelling the determinants of academic success at university
Authors: Smith, Emma
First Published: 23-Jan-2015
Publisher: Taylor & Francis (Routledge)
Citation: Emma Smith (2015): Can higher education compensate for society? Modelling the determinants of academic success at university, British Journal of Sociology of Education, DOI: 10.1080/01425692.2014.987728
Abstract: This paper examines the role that social characteristics play in determining the academic success of students who begin university with roughly similar entry grades. The data used were drawn from the administrative records of over 38,000 UK-domiciled undergraduate students from one British university between 1998 and 2009. Results show that the characteristics of entrants have varied only slightly over this period and intake is still largely in favour of ‘traditional’ entrants: namely those from professional occupational backgrounds, the privately educated and those of traditional age. The relationship between background characteristics and eventual academic success also reflects patterns seen at earlier education stages. However, when prior attainment was taken into account, the link between degree outcome and many social characteristics does diminish – notably for students who were privately educated and who came from professional occupational groups. This suggests that once students have overcome barriers to admission, it is entry grades rather than social characteristics that may most strongly influence eventual academic success.
DOI Link: 10.1080/01425692.2014.987728
ISSN: 0142-5692
eISSN: 1465-3346
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Archived with reference to SHERPA/RoMEO and publisher website. © 2015 Taylor & Francis. The Version of Record of this manuscript has been published and is available in British Journal of Sociology of Education 2015
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, School of Education

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