Explaining differences in reading motivation between immigrant and native students : The role of parental involvement

Villiger, Caroline ; Wandeler, Christian ; Niggli, Alois

In: International Journal of Educational Research, 2014, vol. 64, p. 12-25

Immigrant students usually report high levels of academic interest and motivation compared to their native peers. Given the important role that parents play in fostering their children’s academic motivation, this article focuses on aspects of parental involvement and analyzes possible mediator effects on the students’ reading motivation and achievement using structural equation modeling. The... More

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    Summary
    Immigrant students usually report high levels of academic interest and motivation compared to their native peers. Given the important role that parents play in fostering their children’s academic motivation, this article focuses on aspects of parental involvement and analyzes possible mediator effects on the students’ reading motivation and achievement using structural equation modeling. The analyses were conducted with data from N = 891 Swiss fourth-graders and their families. Immigrant students received less emotional support from their parents, although the latter had significantly higher expectations for their child’s reading achievement. Furthermore, the three aspects of parental involvement investigated had a significant impact on the development of reading motivation. In mediation analyses, just one of the 12 effects tested appeared to be a mediation effect. Further research is needed to explain differences in motivation between immigrant and native students.