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Measuring Family Background in International Studies of Education: Conceptual Issues and Methodological Challenges

Claudia Buchmann*

In all societies, the family plays a crucial role in shaping the educational experiences and achievement of children and the transmission of status from one generation to the next. Throughout the world, children of high-status parents are more likely to get ahead in school. Three interrelated processes—the transmission of financial capital, the transmission of cultural resources, and the transmission of social capital from parents to children—are most often called on to explain this phenomenon. But only fairly recently have studies begun to incorporate all three processes into empirical investigations of family background in determining children’s educational status. In this chapter, I review the measurement of family background, tracing its increasingly complex conceptualization and examining the methods used to assess the impact of family background on educational outcomes in international and comparative research. Then I assess the quality and content of family background items of past large-scale international surveys in detail. Specifically, I focus on several surveys conducted by the International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement (IEA): the Six Subject Study, the First and Second International Mathematics Studies, the Second International Science Study, and the Third International Mathematics and Science Study. I also discuss the Program for International Student Assessment, a current in

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Claudia Buchmann is an assistant professor of sociology at Duke University.



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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement 6 Measuring Family Background in International Studies of Education: Conceptual Issues and Methodological Challenges Claudia Buchmann* In all societies, the family plays a crucial role in shaping the educational experiences and achievement of children and the transmission of status from one generation to the next. Throughout the world, children of high-status parents are more likely to get ahead in school. Three interrelated processes—the transmission of financial capital, the transmission of cultural resources, and the transmission of social capital from parents to children—are most often called on to explain this phenomenon. But only fairly recently have studies begun to incorporate all three processes into empirical investigations of family background in determining children’s educational status. In this chapter, I review the measurement of family background, tracing its increasingly complex conceptualization and examining the methods used to assess the impact of family background on educational outcomes in international and comparative research. Then I assess the quality and content of family background items of past large-scale international surveys in detail. Specifically, I focus on several surveys conducted by the International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement (IEA): the Six Subject Study, the First and Second International Mathematics Studies, the Second International Science Study, and the Third International Mathematics and Science Study. I also discuss the Program for International Student Assessment, a current in *   Claudia Buchmann is an assistant professor of sociology at Duke University.

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement ternational survey of student skill and knowledge being organized by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). Examining how large-scale international surveys have dealt with the challenge of measuring family background in a wide range of societies is a valuable exercise; they constitute an impressive foundation of knowledge on what works and what does not. Based on an assessment of these surveys, I offer recommendations for future international studies of educational achievement to consider in the conceptualization and measurement of family background. These include ways to replicate the successes and avoid the pitfalls of prior conceptualizations of family background, as well as ways to expand the measurement of family background to better account for the multidimensional influences and processes of families that have been found to be related directly to children’s academic success. WHY MEASURE FAMILY BACKGROUND? Why is it important to measure family background well in international comparative studies of education? There are many good answers to this question, but the most pressing for policy makers relate to the following factors: The importance of controlling for family influences in investigations of the impact of schools on children’s learning and achievement, so that we can examine school effects net of family background effects. As Coleman (1975, p. 359) stated more than twenty years ago: “In the attempt to discover effects of school factors on achievement, perhaps the principal villain is the fact that student populations in different schools differ at the outset, and because of this difference, it is not possible merely to judge the quality of a school by the achievements of the students leaving it. It is necessary to control in some way for the variations in student input with which the teachers and staff of the school are confronted.” It is crucial to know how students in a population are distributed on a wide range of family factors that are themselves important predictors of achievement; only then can we assess the role of the school in achieving its social and economic objectives, most notably its efficacy in providing greater equality of educational opportunity. The necessity to improve our knowledge of the ways that the family, as an institution, affects children’s ability and motivation to learn as well as academic achievement. A better understanding of how family background and home environment relate to student learning can help societies formulate policies that may serve to intervene in detrimental family processes or enhance beneficial ones. We are constantly looking

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement for ways to alter educational institutions to improve children’s lives. The same thinking should be applied to the family institution, especially in this era of rapidly changing family life. The importance of controlling for family influences in comparative research on educational achievement. If, in addition to mean levels of achievement, we want to compare the distribution of educational achievement across societies, we need to measure the social conditions across which achievement (or any other educational outcome) is distributed. Family background is one of the most important social conditions to consider when trying to compare populations cross-nationally. This point can be demonstrated with a simple hypothetical two-country comparison. If Country A greatly outperforms Country B on some measure of achievement, it may be tempting to attribute this difference to the quality of education in the two countries. But if upon further investigation we discover that background characteristics of the two comparison populations are very different—Country A has an ethnically and culturally homogeneous population and relatively low income inequality; Country B is culturally and ethnically diverse, is marked by great income inequality, and has experienced a rapid influx of first-generation immigrants from poor countries—then it becomes clear that the differences in achievement scores may say more about the differences of the student populations than about the quality of education in the two countries. The broad distribution of background influences may well be related to a wider distribution of achievement scores in that context. Moreover, the goals and challenges facing the educational system in Country B are likely quite different from those in Country A. Some would use such examples to argue that comparing societies with their attendant cultural, social, and educational differences is a futile exercise. I believe such comparisons can cumulate in new knowledge on learning processes and school effectiveness if we strive to measure and account for these variations in social conditions in comparative research on educational achievement. One or more of these goals have guided much of the international research on the relationship between family influences and educational outcomes. The following section reviews this literature and its contributions to these longstanding issues. FAMILY BACKGROUND AND EDUCATIONAL OUTCOMES: WHAT DO WE KNOW? Although socioeconomic status has always been at the core of the concept of family background, over time, the concept has expanded to include other aspects of families—such as family structure, parental in-

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement volvement with children’s schooling, and cultural and educational resources—in order to reflect the complex, multidimensional ways in which family background and home environment influence individual educational outcomes. Here I focus on how the concept of family background has grown from the initial specification of socioeconomic standing of the family of origin, to include family structure and other demographic characteristics, as well as family social and cultural capital. Socioeconomic Status Three components—parent’s education, parent’s occupation, and family income—typically comprise the measure of family socioeconomic status (SES). Status attainment research begun by sociologists in the United States more than three decades ago laid the foundation for this conceptualization of socioeconomic status and a methodology—usually path analysis and multiple regression techniques with large survey data sets—to investigate the intergenerational transmission of status. In the classic study, The American Occupational Structure, Blau and Duncan (1967) present a basic model of the stratification process in which father’s education and occupational status explain son’s educational attainment, and all three variables, in turn, explain son’s occupational attainment. Around the same time, Sewell and colleagues at the University of Wisconsin began publishing papers that addressed questions regarding the relative impacts of family background and schooling on subsequent educational and occupational attainments (Sewell, Haller, & Portes, 1969; Sewell & Hauser, 1975). A notable aspect of the “Wisconsin model” of status attainment was its focus on social-psychological factors, such as aspirations and motivation, in conjunction with family socioeconomic status in determining student achievement. In this regard, the Wisconsin model attempted to specify the mediating mechanisms by which family origins influenced individual educational and occupational outcomes. While Blau and Duncan specified father’s occupation and education as separate influences, the Wisconsin researchers usually combined these measures, along with mother’s education and family income, into a single measure of socioeconomic status (Haller & Portes, 1973, p. 63). Despite these measurement differences, both models concluded that socioeconomic status strongly determined educational attainment. These classic works established a framework for the study of family background on educational attainment in a wide range of contexts. By the early 1980s, more than 500 papers had attempted to replicate or extend their basic findings (Campbell, 1983). Some researchers applied these constructs to nationally representative samples in the United States (Jencks, 1972); others examined their generalizability to very different countries

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement and contexts (Gerber & Hout, 1995; Hansen & Haller, 1973; Smith & Cheung, 1986). Human capital models in economics, in which family background and schooling decisions determined education and earnings outcomes (Becker & Tomes, 1979), also contributed to this growing field. A thorough review of the burgeoning research on the relationship between family SES and educational outcomes could easily fill a book; instead Table 6-1 provides a reasonably representative sample of the international research on the relationship between socioeconomic status and educational attainment and achievement published since 1970. For each study, the table includes the country of focus, the definition and measurement of SES, the educational outcome studied, and key findings regarding the impact of SES on attainment or achievement. By focusing solely on family background and its relationship to educational outcomes, this summary necessarily neglects other information,1 but permits an assessment of the conceptualization and measurement of socioeconomic status in international studies of educational outcomes. The table reflects several interesting aspects of the field in general. First, most studies utilized survey data and statistical methods to examine the relationship between family SES and educational outcomes. Some early studies only reported correlations or used analysis of covariance to investigate these relationships, but the bulk of research in this field has relied on multivariate modeling strategies such as regression analysis. Second, the research on educational attainment and the research on achievement have developed along somewhat distinct lines, with the former often the purview of sociologists, economists, and demographers, and the latter more often studied by educational researchers and policy analysts. Table 6-1 reflects this development by listing studies of attainment (or in some cases, enrollment) in Panel A, and studies of achievement in Panel B. This distinction should not be overstated; certainly sociologists such as Coleman and others made significant contributions to the early study of educational achievement. Nonetheless, it draws attention to some differences in the scope and interests of these two domains of research. For example, although the impact of family background factors is often a central concern in the research on educational attainment, much of the research on educational achievement is concerned with the effects of school factors, curriculum, or pedagogy; family background receives secondary consideration or is treated merely as a control variable. This is partly due to a longstanding preoccupation with finding “school effects” in response to early studies, such as the Coleman Report (Coleman et al., 1966), which seemed to suggest that school-level differences had little impact on variation among individual children in terms of their academic success. Third, there is more international and comparative research on the

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement determinants of attainment than on the determinants of achievement, largely because achievement data are more difficult to acquire. National population censuses and surveys on diverse topics frequently contain data on the educational histories of all household members that can be used to construct measures of educational attainment. But achievement data must be gathered through the administration of cognitive tests or, in the case of grade-point average or national exam scores, the acquisition of students’ school records, both of which are time-consuming research strategies. The fact that so many of the studies of achievement in Table 6-1 utilize IEA data underscores the importance of these large-scale international surveys as major data sources for research on educational achievement. Here I briefly discuss the major methods and findings of these two interrelated lines of work: research on educational attainment and research on educational achievement. Research on Educational Attainment Building on the foundation laid by status attainment research in the United States, much research has examined the role of social origins in determining educational and occupational status and mobility in a range of countries. Some researchers have examined how this relationship changes over time with large societal changes, such as the expansion of formal schooling, the industrialization of society, or the transition from socialism to capitalism. Regardless of their larger agendas, studies in this realm have contributed greatly to our understanding of how family socioeconomic status shapes educational attainment in a wide range of contexts. Family background has been treated more systematically in research on educational attainment than in research on achievement. The influence of the Blau-Duncan and Wisconsin models is clearly evident; most studies in Panel A conceptualize socioeconomic status as either father’s education and occupation or a composite measure of these and other family background factors. Some researchers have had to alter this approach due to data limitations or considerations of the local context, but still, the systematic approach to the measurement of family background is striking. Occupational status typically is measured via scales that have been developed to generalize the prestige associated with occupations across a wide range of societies. The earliest of these was the Socioeconomic Index (SEI) scale formulated by Duncan (1961) for the United States and subsequently modified by other researchers for other countries. Many of the studies in Panel A use a modified Duncan SEI scale for father’s occupational status. Also building on Duncan’s scale, comparative stratification

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement TABLE 6-1 International Studies of the Relationship Between Family Socioeconomic Status and Educational Outcomes Panel A: Attainment Study Country Measures of Family Socioeconomic Status Hansen & Haller, 1973 Costa Rica Occupational status, consumption status (index of parental education, house construction, and household possessions) Kerckhoff, 1974 Great Britain Father’s education, father’s occupational status Currie, 1977 Uganda Father’s education, father’s occupational status Cochrane & Jamison, 1982 Thailand Father’s education, mother’s education, land ownership Simkus & Andorka, 1982 Hungary Father’s occupation Behrman & Wolfe, 1984 Nicaragua Father’s education, mother’s education, number of siblings, mother present Mukweso, Papagiannis, & Milton, 1984 Zaire Father’s education, father’s occupational status, index of consumption goods Whyte & Parrish, 1984 China Father’s education, father’s occupational status Robinson & Garnier, 1985 France Father’s education, father’s class Smith & Cheung, 1986 Philippines Father’s education, father’s occupational status Jamison & Lockheed, 1987 Nepal Father’s education, father’s literacy, father’s modernity, caste, household landholdings King & Lillard, 1987 Malaysia Father’s education, mother’s education Pong & Post, 1991 Hong Kong Father’s occupational status, mother’s education Lin & Bian, 1991 China Father’s education, father’s occupational status Paterson, 1991 Scotland Father’s occupation, mother’s education., household composition Shavit & Pierce, 1991 Israel Mother’s education, father’s education, father’s occupational status Stevenson & Baker, 1992 Japan Father’s education, mother’s education, family income

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement Outcome Results Attainment Indirect (through aspirations) on attainment Attainment Positive effects on attainment Attainment Positive effects on attainment Enrollment Attainment Education vars positive on enrollment Indirect (through aspirations) on attainment Attainmenta Positive effect on attainment Attainment Positive effects on attainment; stronger effect of mother’s ed. than father’s ed. on all children Attainment Positive effects on attainment Attainment Positive effects on attainment Attainment Positive effects on attainment Attainment Positive effects on attainment Enrollment Positive effects on attainment Attainment Positive effects on attainment; larger effects of mother’s ed. on daughters’ attainment Attainment Positive effects on attainment Attainment Positive effects on attainment Attainment Positive effects on attainment Attainment Positive effects on attainment University enrollment Positive effects on university enrollment

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement Study Country Measures of Family Socioeconomic Status Hout, Raftery, & Bell, 1993 United States Father’s education, father’s occupational status, mother’s education Blossfeld, 1993 Germany Father’s education, father’s occupational status De Graaf & Ganzeboom, status 1993 Netherlands Father’s education, father’s occupational Jonsson, 1993 Sweden Father’s education, father’s occupational status Kerckhoff & Trott, 1993 England Wales Father’s education, father’s occupational status Cobalti & Schizzerotto, 1993 Italy Father’s education, father’s occupational status Buchmann, Charles, & Sacchi, 1993 Switzerland Father’s education, father’s occupational status Tsai & Chiu, 1993 Taiwan Father’s education, father’s occupational status, mother’s education Treiman & Yamaguchi, 1993 Japan Father’s education, father’s occupational status Mateju, 1993 Czechoslovakia Father’s education, father’s occupational status Szelenyi & Aschaffenburg, 1993 Hungary Father’s education, father’s occupational status Heyns & Bialecki, 1993 Poland Father’s education, father’s occupational status Shavit, 1993 Israel Father’s education, father’s occupational status Lillard & Willis, 1994 Malaysia Father’s education, father’s earnings, mother’s education Fuller, Singer, & Keiley, 1995 Botswana Mother’s education, mother’s employment status, senior male’s employment status, household quality and possessions Gerber & Hout, 1995 Soviet Russia Parents’ education, occupational status of main income earner in household

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement Outcome Results Attainmenta Positive effects on attainment Attainmenta Positive effects on attainment Attainmenta Positive effects on attainment Attainmenta Positive effects on attainment Attainmenta Positive effects on attainment Attainmenta Positive effects on attainment Attainmenta Positive effects on attainment Attainmenta Positive effects on attainment Attainmenta Positive effects on attainment Attainmenta Positive effects on attainment Attainmenta Positive effects on attainment Attainmenta Positive effects on attainment Attainmenta Positive effects on attainment Attainment Positive effects on attainment; mother’s ed. stronger for daughters Enrollment (drop out) Mother’s education significantly related to dropout; no effects of other variables Attainmenta Positive effects on attainment

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement Study Country Measures of Family Socioeconomic Status Pong, 1996 Malaysia Household head’s earned income, mother’s education Tansel, 1997 Cote D’Ivoire Ghana Father’s education, mother’s education Total household expenditure Zhou, Moen, & Tuma, 1998 China Father’s education, father’s occupational status Wong, 1998 Czechoslovakia Father’s education, household possessions Buchmann, 2000 Kenya Parent’s education, household financial status Panel B: Achievement Study IEA Data Country Measures of Family Socioeconomic Status Comber & Keeves, 1973 FISS 19 countries Home background (index) Rosier, 1974 FISS Australia Home circumstances (index) Shukla, 1974 FISS India Father’s occupation, father’s education, mother’s education, use of dictionary, number of books in the home, family size Pollock, 1974 FISS Scotland Father’s occupation, number of books in the home, family size Heyneman, 1976   Uganda Parents’ occupation, parents’ education, household possessions Lanzas & Kingston, 1981   Zaire Education of relative with greatest influence on student’s life (e.g., mother, father, uncle, grandparent) Cooksey, 1981   Cameroon Mother’s and father’s education, mother’s and father’s occupation, home amenities (running water, electricity, toilet, refrigerator, cooker) Niles, 1981   Sri Lanka Family SES (index of father’s occupation, father’s education, mother’s education, family income) Heyneman & Loxley, 1983 SISS 29 countries Father’s occupation, father’s education, mother’s education, books in home, dictionary or other measure of consumption in home

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement FIGURE 6-1 Family wealth and science achievement: Science total scores; upper grade, Population 2; 1995. NOTES: Nations not meeting international sampling guidelines shown in italics. Unshaded areas indicate 95 percent confidence interval of population group mean. Population group mean scores are shown in unshaded area in approximate position. The French-speaking (Belgium-Fr) and the Flemish-speaking (Belgium-Fl) populations of Belgium were sampled separately. The placement of Sweden may appear out of place; however, statistically the placement is correct. Latvia (LSS) indicates only Latvian-speaking schools were sampled. SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education (2000, p. 77).

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement RECOMMENDATIONS One of the great benefits of TIMSS has been the ease of use of the data files for secondary analysis, especially the ability for researchers to download them from the TIMSS Web site. If prior surveys, especially SIMS and SISS, could be made similarly accessible via the Internet, it is likely that more researchers would utilize these valuable sources of international data to address questions related to family background and educational outcomes. Moreover, researchers might be encouraged to consider comparing the results of these surveys over time if they had easy access to all three data sources. This is one relatively straightforward way to further the productive synergies between the researchers conducting secondary analyses of the survey data and the survey organizers. Measures of parental education and occupational status are core components of family background that should be incorporated, when possible, into future surveys. Although the problems of missing data and concerns regarding reliability are likely to continue, the value of data gathered on these core concepts often will outweigh these caveats. In some cases, such as with young student populations who might not provide accurate answers or in countries where collecting such information is forbidden by law, incorporating these measures is not feasible. In other cases, as with older student populations, such data can provide valuable information on family background. Survey designers should weigh the advantages and disadvantages of obtaining information on parents’ education and occupation and collect it where possible. Future studies should follow the examples set by TIMSS and PISA and include questions on home possessions as a proxy for wealth. Following the methods of Filmer and Pritchett and other researchers, effort should be devoted to devising a common core of possessions that would allow for cross-national comparisons, but also allow for additional components of this construct to capture variations in home possessions that are of particular interest within nations. Recent and ongoing research on the construction of indices using home possession measures should provide a valuable source of information as survey designers consider how to best measure socioeconomic status with measures of home possessions. Until a definitive conclusion is drawn, however, surveys should strive to include multiple measures of socioeconomic status, namely parents’ education, parents’ occupation, and home possessions. Relatedly, a careful assessment of prior IEA survey data should be conducted to determine the extent of problems related to nonresponse, validity, and reliability of various measures of family SES. Such an assessment could reveal how these problems vary by country or question format and could offer clear recommendations on which types of questions

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement are likely to yield the most robust and valid information on family socioeconomic status. Large-scale international surveys are the best source of comparative data available to study the relationship between family background and educational outcomes across a wide range of societies. Although the investigation of this relationship has not always been the primary concern of survey designers, these surveys do have the (perhaps unenviable) burden to provide researchers with the best family background data possible. Thus in the areas where knowledge is weakest, namely the mapping of cross-cultural variations in the impact of family structure and social/ cultural capital on educational outcomes, these surveys have an especially large contribution to make. Therefore, family structure and social/ cultural capital should be incorporated consistently as aspects of family background. The questions on family structure must be formulated carefully, so that the most important elements of family structure, namely number of brothers and sisters and headship of the household (e.g., single parent versus two biological parents versus stepparent) can be determined. Surveys should include the multiple dimensions of family social and cultural capital, including parental involvement, and parent’s/children’s participation in cultural activities. Surveys organizers should attend to the ongoing research in these areas; as the concepts of social and cultural capital continue to be refined, survey questions may need revision. More generally, a strategy of standardization on core components of a concept, combined with options for nations to include variations, could be an efficient and fruitful way to measure the multiple dimensions of family background and simultaneously fill the need for comparative, yet context-sensitive measures. Researchers interested primarily in international comparisons could utilize the core standardized components, and researchers interested in examining questions of particular concern within a country could take advantage of the context-sensitive measures. The conceptualization of “the family” varies from society to society. Problems regarding different definitions of “family” and “household” could be minimized by explicitly supplying respondents the definition they should use when answering survey questions. For example, before asking about parents’ educational and occupational status, the PISA questionnaire clarifies its definition of “parent” for the respondent in the following way: Some of the following questions are about your mother and father (or those person[s] who are like a mother or father to you—for example, guardians, step-parents, foster parents, etc.). If you share your time with more than one set of parents or guardians, please answer the following

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement questions for those parents/step-parents/guardians you spend the most time with. (OECD, 2000, p. 6). Such clarifications help assure that respondents use the same definition of family or family members as that intended by the survey. It is important to remember that family background is only one of the many topics covered in international studies of educational achievement. Considering their scope, both in terms of content and geographic coverage, the accomplishments of these studies are extremely impressive. Large-scale international surveys have been a valuable source of data for researchers and policy makers concerned with understanding the determinants of educational outcomes. As Husen (1987, p. 33) notes, Cross-national comparisons of student achievements and attitudes provide a unique opportunity for disentangling the relative effect of the factors that the child brings to school. These are the social influences at large and home background in particular, on the one hand, and the key factors operating in the school situation on the other hand. Careful consideration and measurement of family background factors can help to ensure that future surveys continue to provide detailed and comprehensive data with which to address longstanding questions regarding children’s learning processes and educational achievement throughout the world. NOTES 1.   For example, most of the studies listed in the table consider other independent or dependent variables (especially occupational status). Some studies employ cross-sectional data; others use longitudinal data. This information, as well as the broader goals of each research project, cannot be gleaned from Table 6-1; the studies should be consulted directly (see References). 2.   This approach focuses on the relationship between measurable educational inputs and school outcomes and is derived from the notion that the output of the educational process, namely individual student achievement, is related directly to a series of inputs (Hanushek, 1995, pp. 228-229). Family inputs commonly are measured by parental education, income, wealth, and family size. School inputs typically are conceptualized as teachers’ characteristics, school organization, and community factors. 3.   I do not discuss other major surveys such as the International Assessment of Educational Progress (IAEP) or International Adult Literacy Survey because their questionnaires did not include major sections on the family background of respondents. 4.   An additional survey project worthy of note is the Southern Africa Consortium for Monitoring Educational Quality (SACMEQ). In the past decade, this project conducted two assessments (SACMEQ I and II) of conditions of schooling and the quality of primary education in 15 countries in Eastern and Southern Africa. Like the IEA surveys, SACMEQ surveys gathered data on students, teachers, and school administrators, but they also contain family background questions appropriate for developing country contexts. For example, family wealth is assessed with questions on livestock holdings,

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Methodological Advances in Cross-National Surveys of Educational Achievement     household possessions, and structural conditions of the home. Interestingly, the questions on home possessions in TIMSS and PISA were modeled after the SACMEQ survey (I am grateful to an anonymous reviewer for this information). Further information about SACMEQ can be obtained from Kenneth N. Ross, International Institute for Educational Planning (IIEP), UNESCO, Paris, France. 5.   As Filmer and Pritchett (1999, p. 88) explain, principal components analysis is a technique closely related to factor analysis that is used for “summarizing the information contained in a large number of variables to a smaller number by creating a set of mutually uncorrelated components of the data.” For a detailed discussion of this procedure, see Filmer and Pritchett (1998). REFERENCES Aitkin, M., & Longford, N. (1986). Statistical modeling issues in school effectiveness studies (with discussion). Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, Series B, 149, 1-43. Baker, D. P., Riordan, C., & Schaub, M. (1995). The effects of sex-grouped schooling on achievement: The role of national context. Comparative Education Review, 9, 468-481. Beaton, A., Mullis, I., Martin, M., Gonzalez, E., Smith, T., & Kelly, D. (1996a). Science achievement in the middle school years: IEA’s Third International Mathematics and Science Study. Chestnut Hill, MA: Boston College. Beaton, A., Mullis, I., Martin, M., Gonzalez, E., Smith, T., & Kelly, D. (1996b). Mathematics achievement in the middle school years: IEA’s Third International Mathematics and Science Study . Chestnut Hill, MA: Boston College. Becker, G. S., & Tomes, N. (1979). An equilibrium theory of the distribution of household income and intergenerational mobility. Journal of Political Economy, 84, S279-S288. Behrman, J. R., & Birdsall, N. (1983). The quality of schooling: Quantity alone is misleading. American Economic Review, 73, 928-946. Behrman, J. R., & Wolfe, B. (1984). The socioeconomic impact of schooling in a developing country: Is family background critical? Are there biases due to omitted family background controls? Review of Economics and Statistics, 66, 296-303. Bidwell, C. E., & Kasarda, J. D. (1980). Conceptualizing and measuring the effects of school and schooling. American Journal of Education, 88, 401-430. Blake, J. (1989). Family size and achievement. Berkeley: University of California Press. Blau, P. M., & Duncan, O. D. (1967). The American occupational structure. New York: John Wiley & Sons. Blossfeld, H. P. (1993). Changes in educational opportunities in the Federal Republic of Germany: A longitudinal study of cohorts born between 1916 and 1965. In Y. Shavit & H. P. Blossfeld (Eds.), Persistent inequality: Changing educational attainment in thirteen countries (pp. 51-74). Boulder, CO: Westview. Boe, E., Turner, H. M., May, H., Leow, C. S., & Barkanic, G. (1999). The role of student attitudes and beliefs about mathematics and science learning in academic achievement: Evidence from TIMSS for six nations (Center for Research and Evaluation in Social Policy Data Analysis Report No. 1999-DAR3). Unpublished manuscript, University of Pennsylvania. Bos, K., & Kuiper, W. (1999). Modelling TIMSS data in a European comparative perspective: Exploring influencing factors on achievement in mathematics in grade 8. Educational Research and Evaluation, 5, 157-179. Bourdieu, P., & Passeron, J. C. (1977). Reproduction in education, society and culture. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage. Buchmann, C. (2000). Family structure, parental perceptions and child labor in Kenya: What factors determine who is enrolled in school? Social Forces, 78, 1349-1379.

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