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  • Publication
    Childhood adversity and academic attainment: Examining risk, promotive, and protective factors
    (University College Dublin. School of Education, 2022) ;
    0000-0003-2889-2971
    Research has established the negative association between experiencing adversity in childhood and academic attainment in school. However, less is known about the factors which moderate this relationship. This thesis, comprising of a systematic literature review and an empirical journal article, explores this topic. The systematic literature review identified promotive and protective factors for children who have experienced adversity and their academic outcomes. Findings suggested that factors relating to a child’s cognitive ability and parenting are the most commonly identified, and in some cases, moderate the relationship between adversity and academic attainment. Using data from the Growing Up in Ireland (GUI) study, the empirical journal article narrowed this focus by examining factors within the school context. Moderation analysis indicated that factors relating to a young person’s attitudes and beliefs towards learning and school were protective for academic attainment outcomes but no effect was found for relational or school environmental factors. Given the importance of academic attainment for one’s life trajectory, findings from this thesis will guide the understanding of how best to support students to reach their potential in school, in particular those who have experienced adversity.
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