The present study investigated the causes to which parents attribute their children’s academic successes and failures during children’s transition from preschool to primary school. It followed 182 mothers and 167 fathers of 207 children. The parents completed a questionnaire concerning their causal attributions, level of education, and parenting styles in the middle of the preschool year and during Grades 1 and 2. The children’s performance in reading and mathematics was tested at the beginning of the preschool year. The results showed that, while the children were in preschool, parents attributed their children’s success to ability and teaching. When the children moved to primary school, parents increasingly attributed their children’s success to ability, whereas they typically attributed failure to lack of effort. Furthermore, the higher the level of performance the children showed, the more the parents attributed their children’s success to ability and the less they attributed it to teaching.
Rytkönen, Katja; Aunola, Kaisa; and Nurmi, Jari-Erik
"Parents’ Causal Attributions Concerning
Their Children’s School Achievement:
A Longitudinal Study,"
Merrill-Palmer Quarterly: Vol. 51
, Article 6.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/mpq/vol51/iss4/6