The Relationship Between Inequalities, Expectations and Students' Educational and Occupational Attainment




Gibbons-Arhelger, Marilyn

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What is the relationship between inequality, expectations of significant others and students’ educational and occupational attainment? I propose that there is a relationship between family socioeconomic status, gender and race of children, and their aspirations and the expectations of parents, teachers, and school counselors. This relationship extends to influence later educational and occupational attainment. Secondary analysis of National Education Longitudinal Study data reveals that expectations of parents and significant others are related to attainment for all groups, but White males benefit most. While Asian students receive lower levels of teacher interpersonal interactions, they ultimately surpass the other groups in income attainment. These results confirm that status attainment is a product of complex interactions of these factors, but the strongest con-elation is between SES and aspirations and attainment.



education, student aspirations, educational equalization, social status, parent participation


Gibbons-Arhelger, M. (2002). The relationship between inequalities, expectations and students' educational and occupational attainment (Unpublished thesis). Southwest Texas State University, San Marcos, Texas.


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