OGresearch - Self-Esteem 1 Running Head: Self-Esteem and...

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Self-Esteem 1 Running Head: Self-Esteem and Academic Achievement in College Students Self-Esteem and Academic Achievement in College Students William Song University of Michigan – Ann Arbor
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Self-Esteem 2 Self-esteem is defined as an individual’s overall evaluation of himself or herself (Harter, 1983). Self-esteem is one of many recurring themes in psychological literature that is ranked as the third most popular and studied area in psychology. Studies show that the development of self-esteem begins as early at the age of seven.”(Lay & Wakstein, 1985). Studies have been shown to include that self-esteem is a broad area of interest as it can be clearly defined in two types of self-esteem; earned self-esteem and global self-esteem. Major differences in each of these types of self-esteem are the two concepts that rely on academic achievement as the recurring theme. Studies have shown that high self-esteem and academic achievement are positively correlated, whereas some show that they are negatively correlated. There is a belief that the higher one’s self- esteem the better their academic performance. Ogbu(1987) states that minorities’ academic achievement in school can closely be related to the “cultural discontinuities” such as language difficulties and their differing cultural backgrounds. In some racial groups especially those from differing socioeconomic backgrounds, studies have shown enough data to support the hypothesis that self-esteem is correlated with academic achievement. For example, in the study done by “Being well vs. Doing Well” a self- esteem test was administered to all people from four ethnic groups, and on our focus of African-Americans their impression of self-esteem, were ranked high on self-esteem, but low on academic achievement. As for the Asian Americans, there achievement in school was high yet their self-esteem was ranked very low. In “Being well vs. Doing Well” social psychologists administered a self-esteem test to a group of students and adults from all ethnic and social backgrounds. The tests asked for four categories of people, of
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Self-Esteem 3 white, black, Asian, and Mexican descent. The group of people were asked questions such as “I have a lot to be proud of”, “I feel socially accepted”, “I like the way I am”, and “I feel loved and wanted” were questions that were asked to the group of participants from the United States. On the contrary, when asked about the grades received in school, Asians reported the highest grade point averages while blacks showed one of the lowest. In another study done by Lay and Wakstein 1985, a comparison study was done with SAT scores and races in males and females in the fall of 1982. The groups tested blacks, Mexican-Americans, Puerto Ricans, Whites, and Asians’ SAT scores and their corresponding scores with different levels of achievement on the test. The finding showed that the SAT score showed a positive correlation between the score and self-
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OGresearch - Self-Esteem 1 Running Head: Self-Esteem and...

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