This research was supported by a grant from the Institute of Education Sciences (R305A04056) awarded to the National Research Center on Rural Education Support at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of the granting agency. We wish to thank three anonymous reviewers for their thoughtful comments and suggestions on earlier versions of this manuscript. Any remaining errors are our responsibility. Direct correspondence to Soo-yong Byun, Department of Education Policy Studies, College of Education, the Pennsylvania State University, 208F Rackely Building, University Park, PA 16802; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; phone: 814-865-9271.
The Role of Social Capital in Educational Aspirations of Rural Youth*
Version of Record online: 12 JUL 2012
Copyright © 2012, by the Rural Sociological Society
Volume 77, Issue 3, pages 355–379, September 2012
How to Cite
Byun, S.-y., Meece, J. L., Irvin, M. J. and Hutchins, B. C. (2012), The Role of Social Capital in Educational Aspirations of Rural Youth. Rural Sociology, 77: 355–379. doi: 10.1111/j.1549-0831.2012.00086.x
- Issue online: 2 SEP 2012
- Version of Record online: 12 JUL 2012
Drawing on a recent national survey of rural high school students, this study investigated the relationship between social capital and educational aspirations of rural youth. Results showed that various process features of family and school social capital were important for predicting rural youths' educational aspirations beyond sociodemographic background. In particular, parents' and teachers' educational expectations for their child and student, respectively, were positively related to educational aspirations of rural youth. In addition, discussion with parents about college was positively related to educational aspirations of rural youth. On the other hand, there was little evidence to suggest that number of siblings and school proportions of students eligible for free lunch and minority students are related to educational aspirations of rural youth, after controlling for the other variables. We highlight unique features of rural families, schools, and communities that may combine to explain the complexity of the role of social capital in shaping educational aspirations of rural youth.