I’ve been involved in an interesting discussion with my PIDP colleagues. There was a suggestion (backed by research evidence), that a student’s social environment can have an impact on their academic success. Authors stated that most students who surround themselves with high-achievers improved their performance over time; the opposite was also true. (To see the article, click here.)
But, what about John Hattie’s synthesis of over 800 studies that looked at student achievement? I’ve discussed his idea of Visible Learning earlier in my blog, but just to review, he designed a meta-analysis and came up with a way of ranking various influences related to learning and achievement. And where did peer influences fit on his list? Nearly halfway down the list of positive influences. At the top of his list is the teacher’s estimates of achievement. So…perhaps the teacher estimates similar achievement for certain pockets of students? If this is the case, both studies could be true… Or does peer influence not really matter all that much?
Here’s a neat infographic depicting Hattie’s results: