SSP-FORS Methods and Research Meeting
Understanding the impact of socio-economic status (SES) and migration background on educational achievement is central to social stratification research. Accurate measurement of these family background indicators is crucial. Past studies have examined the validity of students' reports on parents' occupation, education, and home book availability, being influenced by factors like test scores or migration background. Our research delves into survey data from Swiss 8-year-olds, revealing disparities between student and parental reports, and evaluates the usefulness of administrative data to gather information on family background. The implications of unit and item nonresponse as well as measurement error are further discussed for commonly used models in education research.
In the second step, we explore alternative indicators for assessing socio-economic disparities among children using indicators for wealth cues, such as building images, birthday gifts, bathroom presence, and bedroom ownership. We validate these measures against traditional SES indicators, parental reports, and administrative data. Our findings indicate the potential of alternative SES measures when surveying young children, but these measures require further research and refinement.
Jessica Herzing is a scientific collaborator at the University of Bern and a principal investigator of the project “Digitalization in Swiss schools” (DigiPrim). Before her activities at the University of Bern, she was a PostDoc at the University of Lausanne and was affiliated researcher at FORS. Jessica gained a PhD from the University of Mannheim, in the field of survey methodology under the supervision of Annelies Blom and Frauke Kreuter. Her research follows two major streams in the field of (1) digitalization in the school and home environment and its association with social inequality and educational trajectories, and (2) survey methodology regarding nonresponse error in online studies with a specific focus on the role of ICT literacy and surveying children.