Low-income mothers' entry into postsecondary education during middle childhood: Effects on adolescents

Anne Martin*, Margo Gardner, Amélie Petitclerc

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


This study tests whether young adolescents' achievement and behavior are associated with their mother's entry into post-secondary education (PSE) during their middle childhood years. It also examines five family processes that may link maternal PSE to development in middle childhood (income, home learning environment, mother's educational expectations for child, maternal presence, and family affective climate). The sample selects low-income families from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth of 1979. Propensity score weighting adjusts for mothers' self-selection into PSE. We find that adolescents whose mothers entered PSE in their middle childhood scored higher than their peers on math, but similarly on reading, behavior problems, delinquency, and substance use. There were no associations between mothers' PSE entry and the proposed mediators.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number104470
JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
StatePublished - Nov 2019


  • Adolescence
  • Low-income children
  • Low-income mothers
  • Maternal education
  • Middle childhood
  • Postsecondary education

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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