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Citation Information

Type Thesis or Dissertation - PhD thesis
Title The Influence of Parental Education and Literacy Skill Levels on Children’s Achievement in Primary School, Moyo District, Rural Uganda
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2015
URL http://www.tara.tcd.ie/bitstream/handle/2262/74406/Format Doc 6.pdf?sequence=1
This thesis explores how the different levels of parents’ education and literacy skills influence
their primary six children’s academic attainment. The interest in this area was derived from
endemic poor literacy abilities among universal primary school children in rural Uganda
leading to persistent poor school achievement.
The study reviews pertinent literature related to parental education and literacy skill practices
in the home setting. The focus is on the nature and quality of support parents provide, the
amount of available literacy related resources in the home environment because of parental
education or lack of it and the challenges they face. These areas underscore the three research
questions guiding the study. Related studies indicate that if parents have well developed
literacy skills and practices, and adequate literacy resources at home and in the community,
they will positively influence their children’s education. However, when they lack such
symbolic social capital, they face challenges that are likely to impact negatively on their
children’s educational achievement. This phenomenon is explored in this study in a
development world context, notably the Moyo district in Northern Uganda.
Mixed-methods with an ethnographic element is used to gather data from 119 participants
across three geographical sites through the methods of questionnaires, semi-structured
interviews, document analysis and participant observation involving three primary schools,
and nine families of different educational and economic backgrounds. Vygotsky’s sociocultural
historical theory and the concept of cultural capital in terms of intergenerational
transmission of educational success underpins the basis for the inquiry.

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