Rural /urban disparities in science achievement in post-socialist countries: The evolving influence of socioeconomic status
Disparities in educational outcomes exist between students in rural areas as compared to students in urban settings. While there is some evidence that these rural disparities are present in eastern Europe, little is known about young peoplesΓÇÖ lives in the rural areas of this region. This paper presents an analysis of science achievement by location (rural v. urban) using all available waves of the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS). We examined the eighth grade data from five countries: Lithuania, Romania, the Russian Federation, Hungary, and Slovenia. Findings demonstrated that students attending rural schools had significantly lower science scores and that the rural disadvantage grew between 1995 and 2011 in some countries, but became non-significant in others. Overall, family socioeconomic status played an important role in determining the educational outcomes of rural students. The implications of these findings are explored in relation to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) 2015 Education for All goals.
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