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PARENTAL INVOLVMENT, FAMILY STRUCTURE, AND ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT - page 26 / 102

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appear to be similar to those in the Swedish study. In Weitoft et al. (2004), the results

indicate that single-parent families were more likely to be employed in unskilled, manual

and non-manual jobs whereas partnered parents were more likely to be upper-level, non-

manual workers (p.137). The Swedish school system has a compulsory, nine year

education requirement, and the study found that children from lone parent households

were much more likely to finish only the required nine years. In addition, 36 percent of

children from intact, two-parent homes finished at least 13 years of schooling (pp.137-

39).

A study on the effects of home computers on academic achievement by Attewell and

Battle (1999) also included a control variable for family structure. The study, devised to

assess the effects of home computers on academic achievement, also included measures

of cultural capital, social capital, race, region, gender, and SES. In their analysis, family

structure includes several dummy variables to represent various combinations of family

structure including: biological mother only; biological father only; biological mother and

step-father; biological father and step-mother; and living with other relatives such as

grandparents; the reference category is a student being raised by both biological parents

(p.3). The regression coefficient for academic achievement of students living with single

mothers was 0.64 (p<.001) for reading and 0.63 (p<.01) for math. In other words,

students who used computers for educational purposes at home, living with their

biological mothers had higher scores in math and reading relative to students in the

reference category–living with both biological parents after controlling for SES (p.6,

original italics).

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