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Attainment grouping in primary school, verbal skills, and psychological symptoms in the United Kingdom; Evidence from the Millennium Cohort Study

Karamanos, Alexis; (2021) Attainment grouping in primary school, verbal skills, and psychological symptoms in the United Kingdom; Evidence from the Millennium Cohort Study. Doctoral thesis (Ph.D), UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

Background There is a lack of studies on the role of primary school attainment grouping on children’s verbal skills and psychological symptoms (externalising and internalising) in a contemporary United Kingdom (UK) context. Socioeconomic inequalities in cognitive and psychological outcomes increase during compulsory education in the UK. However, no UK studies exist on the contributing role of attainment grouping in primary school. This PhD examines associations between attainment grouping, family income, initial verbal differences (age 5), and the development of verbal skills and psychological symptoms. Methods By using the Millennium Cohort Study (MCS), fixed effects difference-in-difference modelling examined associations between attainment grouping transition, and the change in verbal skills and psychological symptoms from 7 to 11 years. Growth curve modelling examined associations between attainment grouping at age 7 and trajectories of psychological symptoms from 7 to 14 years. Results Overall, no association was observed between attainment grouping transition and a change in MCS participants’ verbal skills or psychological symptoms from ages 7 to 11 years. However, contingent on verbal skills at age 5 (high vs low), the gap in verbal skills grew over time for children who transitioned from mixed attainment classes to attainment groups compared with those who stayed in mixed attainment classes throughout. Overall, attainment grouping at age 7 was not associated with trajectories of psychological symptoms from age 7 to age 14 and was not associated with an increase in socioeconomic inequalities in psychological symptoms over time. Attainment grouping at age 7 was associated with a slightly slower increase in internalising symptoms over time among those children who entered primary school with lower verbal skills. 4 Conclusions Overall, attainment grouping in primary school was not associated with a change in verbal skills or psychological symptoms. Attainment grouping transition was associated with an increasing gap in verbal skills during primary school.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Qualification: Ph.D
Title: Attainment grouping in primary school, verbal skills, and psychological symptoms in the United Kingdom; Evidence from the Millennium Cohort Study
Event: UCL
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © The Author 2021. Original content in this thesis is licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/). Any third-party copyright material present remains the property of its respective owner(s) and is licensed under its existing terms. Access may initially be restricted at the author’s request.
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10120640
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