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Journal Article: The cultural gap hypothesis as an explanation for the achievement patterns of Mexican-American students

Journal Article » The cultural gap hypothesis as an explanation for the achievement patterns of Mexican-American students


Cross Cultural Differences, Elementary School Students, Junior High, School Students, Mexican Americans, Whites, Academic Achievement, Field Dependence, Parental Attitudes, Racial and Ethnic Differences, Student Attitudes, Teacher Attitudes, Values


Buenning, Meredith; Tollefson, Nona


1987, Jul


Investigated the hypothesis that the academic achievement of Mexican-American students could be explained in part by a conflict in the values of Mexican-American and Anglo-American cultures. 56 Mexican-American and 57 Anglo-American 5th-8th grade students, their parents, and teachers reported their adherence to traditional school values and their view of the importance of field-independent behaviors to success in school. Differences in perceptions and values were observed between cultures and between high-achieving and low-achieving students. The greatest attitudinal differences were observed when high-achieving students were compared with parents and teachers. High-achieving students were less traditional in their attitudes toward school and more field independent than were parents, teachers, and low-achieving students. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2008 APA )