Cultural Capital Theory and predicting Parental Involvement in

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Matthew Ringenberg
Erin McElwee
Kendre srael


Cultural capital theory, developed by Bourdieu, and applied to elementary schools by Lee and Bowens, provides a theory for predicting how parents are involved in children’s elementary education. Specifically it predicts that parents with greater cultural capital will be more involved, and that involvement will be more efficacious in helping their children succeed.  This study uses Epstein’s six-construct configuration of parental involvement and Ringenberg’s Parent And School Survey as the framework and instrument for understanding and measuring parental involvement. Cultural capital theory explained parental involvement moderately well. Parenting, a type of parental involvement, was the strongest predictor of academic understanding.


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