The present study used prospective data to examine the relationship between the family environment (as measured by the Home Observation for Measurement of the Environment-Short Form [HOME-SF]) and child and adolescent achievement, and to determine the genetic and environmental contributions to this relationship. Data are from 2108 full- and half-sibling pairs from the National Longitudinal Study of Youth Child data set (NLSY-Child). The average age of participants was 11.9 for older siblings (SD = 3.0) and 8.2 for younger siblings (SD = 2.8). The structural equation modeling program, Mx, was used to obtain the most precise estimates of genetic and environmental contributions to variation in the HOME-SF, variation in achievement, and to the covariation between the HOME-SF and achievement. According to the best-fitting, most parsimonious model, common genetic factors explained approximately one-quarter of the correlation between the HOME-SF and achievement, whereas common shared environmental factors explained the majority (75%) of this relationship. Genetic influences also accounted for over one-third of the variation in both the HOME-SF and achievement. Shared environmental influences explained 35% and 50% of the variation in achievement and the HOME-SF, respectively. The discussion mentions possible mechanisms by which genetic and environmental factors exert their influence on the relationship between the HOME-SF and achievement.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)