Journal Article: Gap or Gaps: Challenging the Singular Definition of the Achievement Gap


Education, Student achievements, Race differences, National Education Longitudinal Study of 1988


Carpenter, Dick M., II; Ramirez, Al; Severn, Laura


2006, November


Analyzing data on 15,618 12th-grade students from the National Education Longitudinal Study, a study examined within-group differences in achievement across Latino, Caucasian, and African-American student populations. Findings revealed multiple achievement gaps within and between ethnic groups, with similar variables contributing to within-group achievement gaps across all three groups. Ethnicity did not alter the importance of certain variables in academic achievement, variables such as homework and parental involvement. Findings questioned the singular definition of the achievement gap, suggesting that current policies based on this definition may be missing the mark in raising levels of achievement within and between groups.


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