Accounting for variation in science and mathematics achievement: a multilevel analysis of Australian data third international mathematics and science study (TIMSS)

Beverley J. Webster, Darrell L. Fisher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

45 Citations (Scopus)


One of the most consistent themes evident in the literature dealing with rural education is that of rural disadvantage. Much research and literature indicates that students from rural schools receive an education that is inferior to that of students from larger urban or suburban schools. Of the matrix of factors reported to lead to that disadvantage, geographical isolation and the extent to which it restricts access is reported to result in rural schools not having the same standard of resource allocation as urban schools where access is not a problem. This study addresses the issue of resource availability in rural and urban Australian schools and includes the variables: students' attitudes towards science and mathematics and career aspirations of these students. The analysis includes socioeconomic status and gender of these students and investigates how these variables relate to student achievement. Do students in rural schools have the same educational opportunity as students in urban schools? In this study a multilevel model is used which takes into account the classroom level variance in student achievement as well as individual variance and school level variance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)339-360
Number of pages22
JournalSchool Effectiveness and School Improvement
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2000
Externally publishedYes

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