Academic self-concept of Indigenous children: The importance of strong relationships with teachers, peers, and family

Wednesday, 3 July 2019
Huw Peacock

Understanding the factors that contribute to improving Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander children’s academic ability and educational success is important. Self-concept has been recognised as useful in understanding the academic achievement, social and emotional development, relationships, and resilience of children. This paper aims to understand the factors influencing academic self-concept of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander children in Australia through analysing data from Aboriginal children aged 10.5 to 12 years from the Longitudinal Study of Indigenous Children Wave’s 7 K Cohort. Results show overall positive levels of Aboriginal children’s self-perception at school. Factors such as level of relative isolation, teacher perception, peer relationships, feedback from mother, and contact with community leaders and elders is positively associated with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children’s schooling mathematics and reading self-concepts. These findings are discussed in relation to the current literature.