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This study investigated for the first time several characteristics of underachievement in a large sample of Hong Kong elementary schoolchildren. More males were identified as underachievers than females, but the ratio was substantially less than the two-to-one rate typically found in the American literature. The stability and persistence of underachievement increased during the elementary school years, and the stability of underachievement tended to be higher in subject matter that was relatively more difficult, which varied wth gender. Underachievement became more specific to particular academic subjects rather than more general across the elementary grades. Parents and teachers, but not the children themselves, perceived that underachievers were more capable than same-grade nonunderachievers (who score lower on ability tests), although this awareness is more likely directed at male than female underachievers, which has been observed in other samples. In grades 1–4, teachers provided extra mentoring, communications, and support to underachievers. Thereafter, underachievers became more disruptive, impatient, and aggressive in school and perhaps at home. At that point, teachers became less supportive, offered less extra mentoring, and applied greater behavioral control over underachievers. Underachieving children also perceived that their parents became less supportive and used more discipline in grades 5–6 relative to grades 3–4. These correlates of underachievement suggests the existence of a syndrome of underachievement that separates underachievers from children who have the same grades but lower mental ability.