Developmental cascades and educational attainment

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Date of Original Version



Developmental cascades describe how systems of development interact and influence one another to shape human development across the lifespan. Despite its popularity, developmental cascades are commonly used to understand the developmental course of psychopathology, typically in the context of risk and resilience. Whether this framework can be useful for studying children's educational outcomes remains underexplored. Therefore, in this chapter, we provide an overview of how developmental cascades can be used to study children's academic development, with a particular focus on the biological, cognitive, and contextual pathways to educational attainment. We also provide a summary of contemporary statistical methods and highlight existing data sets that can be used to test developmental cascade models of educational attainment from birth through adulthood. We conclude the chapter by discussing the challenges of this research and explore important future directions of using developmental cascades to understand educational attainment.

Publication Title, e.g., Journal

Advances in Child Development and Behavior