Self-efficacy, parent–child relationships, and academic performance: a comparison of European American and Asian American college students

Shu Yuan, Dana A. Weiser, Judith L. Fischer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

Parent–child relationships play an important role in successful academic outcomes. Previous research suggests that the association between parent–child relationships and offspring’s academic achievement may be mediated by offspring’s self-efficacy levels, although these relationships are not fully understood. Furthermore, the association between family support and academic outcomes is well-documented among European Americans, but not across cultures. Therefore, the present study examined how parent–child relationship quality relates to young adults’ academic achievement and self-efficacy among European Americans and Asian Americans. Participants were 258 undergraduate students (85 male, 173 female) who completed a survey. Overall, both parent–child relationships and self-efficacy were significantly associated with the offspring’s academic performance, and self-efficacy mediated the relationship between parent–child relationships and school outcomes. Ethnicity moderated these relationships: among European American students, quality of parent–child relationships was not associated with self-efficacy level whereas for Asian Americans, parent–child relationships were associated with self-efficacy. These findings suggest that European American college students’ self-efficacy levels are less dependent on parent–child relationship quality, but for Asian Americans college students it may be important for educators to facilitate communication and family support so students may continue to use family as a resource for self-efficacy levels.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)261-280
Number of pages20
JournalSocial Psychology of Education
Volume19
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2016

Keywords

  • Academic performance
  • Cross-cultural
  • Parent–child relationships
  • Self-efficacy

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