The influence of gender-based relationship efficacy on attitudes toward school

Ryan D. Field, Carol Martin, Naomi C.Z. Andrews, Dawn E. England, Kristina M. Zosuls

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations

Abstract

The goal was to assess the role of children’s social cognitions about peers in attitudes toward school. Because of gender segregation, we differentiated children’s cognitions about same-gender and other-gender peers. We examined the influence of gender-based relationship efficacy for both own-gender and other-gender peers (GBRE-Own and GBRE-Other) on school-related outcomes while controlling for other peer relationship variables. Students (N = 206, fourth grade) reported on relationship efficacy, peer relationships, and school outcomes in Year 1 and again 1 year later. Results indicated that efficacy beliefs were positively related to school outcomes. Moreover, a developmental pattern emerged: GBRE-Own consistently predicted school outcomes in fourth grade but not fifth, and GBRE-Other consistently predicted school outcomes in fifth grade but not fourth. As interest in other-gender relationships becomes more prominent in late childhood, efficacy about other-gender interactions appears to exert influence in mixed-gender contexts (e.g., classrooms). Implications are discussed for improving peer interactions and school attitudes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)396-421
Number of pages26
JournalMerrill-Palmer Quarterly
Volume63
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

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