Physical attractiveness and the accumulation of social and human capital in adolescence and young adulthood: assets and distractions.
ABSTRACT: Beauty has a well-documented impact on labor market outcomes with both legal and policy implications. This monograph investigated whether this stratification is rooted in earlier developmental experiences. Specifically, we explored how high schools’ dual roles as contexts of social relations and academic progress contributed to the long-term socioeconomic advantages of being physically attractive. Integrating theories from multiple disciplines, the conceptual model of this study contends that physically attractive youths’ greater social integration and lesser social stigma help them accumulate psychosocial resources that support their academic achievement while also selecting them into social activities that distract from good grades. A mixed methods design, combining statistical analyses of the National Longitudinal Survey of Adolescent Health and qualitative analyses of a single high school, supported and expanded this model. The data revealed that the benefits of attractiveness flowed through greater social integration but were partially offset by social distractions, especially romantic/sexual partnerships and alcohol-related problems. Interview and ethnographic data further revealed that adolescents themselves understood how physical attractiveness could lead to favorable treatment by teachers and classmates while also enticing youth to emphasize socializing and dating, even when the latter took time from other activities (like studying) and marginalized some classmates. These patterns, in turn, predicted education, work, family, and mental health trajectories in young adulthood. The results of this interdisciplinary, theoretically grounded, mixed methods study suggest that adolescence may be a critical period in stratification by physical appearance and that the underlying developmental phenomena during this period are complex and often internally contradictory. The monograph concludes with discussion of theoretical and policy implications and recommendations for future developmental research.
Project description:<h4>Background and objective</h4>Previous studies of academic achievement of children with oral clefts have mostly relied on small, clinic-based samples prone to ascertainment bias. In the first study in the United States to use a population-based sample with direct assessment, we evaluated the academic achievement of children with oral clefts relative to their classmates.<h4>Methods</h4>Children born with isolated oral clefts in Iowa from 1983 to 2003 were identified from the Iowa Registry for Congenital and Inherited Disorders and matched to unaffected classmates by gender, school/school district, and month and year of birth. Academic achievement was assessed by using standardized tests of academic progress developed by the Iowa Testing Programs. Iowa Testing Programs data were linked to birth certificates for all children. Regression models controlled for household demographic and socioeconomic factors. The analytical sample included 588 children with clefts contributing 3735 child-grade observations and 1874 classmates contributing 13?159 child-grade observations.<h4>Results</h4>Children with oral clefts had lower scores than their classmates across all domains and school levels, with a 5-percentile difference in the overall composite score. Children with clefts were approximately one-half grade level behind their classmates and had higher rates of academic underachievement and use of special education services by 8 percentage points. Group differences were slightly lower but remained large and significant after adjusting for many background characteristics.<h4>Conclusions</h4>Children with oral clefts underperformed across all academic areas and grade levels compared with their classmates. The results support a model of early testing and intervention among affected children to identify and reduce academic deficits.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:To examine trajectories in academic achievement for children with oral clefts versus unaffected classmates and explore predictors of persistently low achievement among children with oral clefts. DESIGN:Longitudinal cohort study of academic achievement in a population-based sample. SETTING AND PARTICIPANTS:Children born from 1983 through 2003 with oral clefts were identified from the Iowa Registry for Congenital and Inherited Disorders and matched to unaffected classmates by sex, school/school district and month and year of birth. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES:Academic achievement was measured from Iowa Testing Programs data. Outcomes included achievement scores in reading, language and mathematics. RESULTS:Academic achievement data were available for 586 children with oral clefts and 1873 unaffected classmates. Achievement trajectories were stable for both groups. Children with oral clefts were more likely than their classmates to be classified into persistent low achievement trajectories, including when adjusting for socioeconomic differences: OR=1.63, 95% CI 1.23 to 2.16 for reading; OR=1.73, 95% CI 1.29 to 2.31 for language; OR=1.45, 95% CI 1.05 to 1.99 for math. Predictors of low achievement were cleft palate only (vs other cleft types), adolescent mothers, low maternal education and less frequent use of prenatal care. CONCLUSIONS:Most children have steady academic trajectories and children with oral clefts are at greater risk for persistent low achievement in school than unaffected classmates. These findings support the need for routine, early screening for academic deficits in this population. Cleft palate only, low parental education and adolescent mothers are associated with increased risk for persistent low achievement.
Project description:Academic motivation consists of reward-based extrinsic motivation and curiosity-based intrinsic motivation. Students studying at university or college develop several new social connections with friends, classmates, and teachers, in addition to their family and community. Belonging to their networks, students acquire opinions, appreciation, trust, and norms of the society. Whether those social connections enhance the motivation of university students for academic work is a question yet to be answered in the context of health profession education in Japan. Judo-therapist education is a form of health profession education in Japan. This study aimed to measure the academic motivation and social capital (SC) of judo-therapist students in Japan, and to find the relation between social capital and academic motivation. This cross-sectional study recruited a total of 2247 students applying multi-stage sampling across Japan. A Japanese version Academic Motivation Scale (AMS) measured the learning motivation in three constructs: (1) intrinsic motivation (IM); (2) extrinsic motivation (EM); and (3) amotivation (alpha 0.94). A newly-developed 46-itemed, 4-pointed scale measured social capital (SC) in five constructs: (1) family relations, (2) on-campus friends, (3) off-campus friends, (4) classroom social capital; and (5) regional social capital (alpha 0.85). Robust regression analysis treated all constructs of SC as independent variables and IM and EM as dependent variables respectively in the three models. Among the average level of constructs, the family SC average level was the highest. Classroom SC was less than family SC and community SC was the lowest. Intrinsic motivation is positively influenced by classroom SC the most, followed by family SC, on-campus friends' SC, and community SC. Extrinsic motivation is positively influenced by classroom SC the most, followed by family SC, on-campus friends' SC, and community SC. Amotivation is negatively influenced by social capital constructs except external friends' SC. In conclusion, social connections have the power to enhance the motivation of university students' academic work within health profession education. The relations, trust and bonds developed in the classroom may allow an adult learner's motivation to evolve into autonomous intrinsic motivation and prevent amotivation.
Project description:A core hypothesis in developmental theory predicts that genetic influences on intelligence and academic achievement are suppressed under conditions of socioeconomic privation and more fully realized under conditions of socioeconomic advantage: a Gene × Childhood Socioeconomic Status (SES) interaction. Tests of this hypothesis have produced apparently inconsistent results. We performed a meta-analysis of tests of Gene × SES interaction on intelligence and academic-achievement test scores, allowing for stratification by nation (United States vs. non-United States), and we conducted rigorous tests for publication bias and between-studies heterogeneity. In U.S. studies, we found clear support for moderately sized Gene × SES effects. In studies from Western Europe and Australia, where social policies ensure more uniform access to high-quality education and health care, Gene × SES effects were zero or reversed.
Project description:The promotion of communicative competence in students play a key role in schools for the purpose of improving social, emotional and coexistence relationships in Secondary Education students. The development of said competence can represent a great strategy to improve conflicts in the classroom, notably bullying. We used a quasi-experimental pre-test and post-test control group design with a sample of 55 students from the city of Salamanca (Spain) to analyse the level of conflict and their perceptions about bullying during the 2017-2018 academic year. The anti-bullying programme called the Improvement of Coexistence and Communicative Competence (ICCC) programme used is. The behaviour of students based on their level of coexistence with the group of classmates was measured by the INSEBULL instrument (Bullying Assessment Instrument), which added one more dimension of own elaboration. The results showed that, even though the significant levels of conflict, they decreased substantially once the ICCC programme was applied. Furthermore, we found differences between the control and experimental groups which underlined the effectiveness of the program. Regarding gender, no differences were found in the experimental group. This study shows that the development of communicative competence in students has a significant impact on their level of coexistence with other classmates, although the results suggested the need for longitudinal implementation of the programme in order to improve school coexistence and social skills of students from the early stages of education.
Project description:This study aimed to determine the proportion of individuals who voluntarily reduced interaction with their family members, friends, and colleagues or classmates to avoid coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection and the associations of reduced social interaction with perceived social support during the COVID-19 pandemic in Taiwan. Moreover, the related factors of voluntary reduction of social interaction were examined. We recruited participants via a Facebook advertisement. We determined the reduced social interaction, perceived social support, cognitive and affective constructs of health belief and demographic characteristics among 1954 respondents (1305 women and 649 men; mean age: 37.9 years with standard deviation 10.8 years). In total, 38.1% of respondents voluntarily reduced their social interaction with friends to avoid COVID-19 infection, 36.1% voluntarily reduced their interaction with colleagues or classmates, and 11.1% voluntarily reduced interaction with family members. Respondents who voluntarily reduced interaction with other people reported lower perceived social support than those who did not voluntarily reduce interaction. Respondents who were older and had a higher level of worry regarding contracting COVID-19 were more likely to voluntarily reduce interaction with family members, friends, and colleagues or classmates to avoid COVID-19 infection than respondents who were younger and had a lower level of worry regarding contracting COVID-19, respectively. The present study revealed that despite strict social distancing measures not being implemented in Taiwan, more than one-third of respondents voluntarily reduced their interaction with friends and colleagues or classmates. The general public should be encouraged to maintain social contacts through appropriately distanced in-person visits and telecommunication.
Project description:Cross-cultural research has repeatedly demonstrated sex differences in the importance of partner characteristics when choosing a mate. Men typically report higher preferences for younger, more physically attractive women, while women typically place more importance on a partner's status and wealth. As the assessment of such partner characteristics often relies on visual cues, this raises the question whether visual experience is necessary for sex-specific mate preferences to develop. To shed more light onto the emergence of sex differences in mate choice, the current study assessed how preferences for attractiveness, resources, and personality factors differ between sighted and blind individuals using an online questionnaire. We further investigate the role of social factors and sensory cue selection in these sex differences. Our sample consisted of 94 sighted and blind participants with different ages of blindness onset: 19 blind/28 sighted males and 19 blind/28 sighted females. Results replicated well-documented findings in the sighted, with men placing more importance on physical attractiveness and women placing more importance on status and resources. However, while physical attractiveness was less important to blind men, blind women considered physical attractiveness as important as sighted women. The importance of a high status and likeable personality was not influenced by sightedness. Blind individuals considered auditory cues more important than visual cues, while sighted males showed the opposite pattern. Further, relationship status and indirect, social influences were related to preferences. Overall, our findings shed light on the availability of visual information for the emergence of sex differences in mate preference.
Project description:This article includes data on the engagement behaviors of seven robotically-embodied graduate students who attended class with an on-campus instructor, three robotically-embodied classmates, and two physically-embodied classmates; the classmates were not part of the study . Purposive sampling was used to collect data from the target population of robot users. The present data were collected through video recordings of a class session and an online survey. Initial coding of the students' actions was based on an adaptation of the Telepresence and Engagement Measurement Scale (TEMS) , which was based on the National Survey of Student Engagement [3,4]. Thematic analysis was used to identify the potential determinants of robotic students' engagement. From these observations, we discovered that robotic students used their bodies differently than what they self-report, and their behaviors were dependent on classroom structure and actions of the instructor.
Project description:Our understanding of health and social stratification can be enriched by testing tenets of cumulative inequality theory that emphasize how the accumulation of inequality is dependent on the developmental stage being considered, the duration and stability of poor health, and the family resources available to children. I analyze longitudinal data from the British National Child Development Study (N = 9,252) to ask: (1) if child health is a source of cumulative inequality in academic achievement, (2) whether this relationship depends on the timing and duration of poor health, and (3) whether trajectories are sensitive to levels of family capital. The results suggest that the relationship between health and academic achievement emerges very early in life and persists and that whether we observe shrinking or widening inequality as children age depends on when we measure their health and whether children have access to compensatory resources.
Project description:Attractiveness and distinctiveness constitute facial features with high biological and social relevance. Bringing a developmental perspective to research on social-cognitive face perception, we used a large set of faces taken from the FACES Lifespan Database to examine effects of face and perceiver characteristics on subjective evaluations of attractiveness and distinctiveness in young (20-31 years), middle-aged (44-55 years), and older (70-81 years) men and women. We report novel findings supporting variations by face and perceiver age, in interaction with gender and emotion: although older and middle-aged compared to young perceivers generally rated faces of all ages as more attractive, young perceivers gave relatively higher attractiveness ratings to young compared to middle-aged and older faces. Controlling for variations in attractiveness, older compared to young faces were viewed as more distinctive by young and middle-aged perceivers. Age affected attractiveness more negatively for female than male faces. Furthermore, happy faces were rated as most attractive, while disgusted faces were rated as least attractive, particularly so by middle-aged and older perceivers and for young and female faces. Perceivers largely agreed on distinctiveness ratings for neutral and happy emotions, but older and middle-aged compared to young perceivers rated faces displaying negative emotions as more distinctive. These findings underscore the importance of a lifespan perspective on perception of facial characteristics and suggest possible effects of age on goal-directed perception, social motivation, and in-group bias. This publication makes available picture-specific normative data for experimental stimulus selection.