The Role of Cultural Discontinuity in the Academic Outcomes of Latina/o High School Students

Amanda Taggart, Utah State University


This study examined the impact of cultural discontinuity on the academic outcomes of Latina/o high school students. Hierarchical multiple regression was utilized to (a) investigate the significant differences between the characteristics and academic outcomes of high school students who do and do not experience cultural discontinuity between their home- and school-based learning and social experiences based on Eurocentric cultural values, and (b) examine the contribution of demographic variables, socio-cultural variables, academic experiences, and cultural discontinuity to students' cumulative grade point average (GPA) and standardized test scores. Data were collected from two high schools in South Central Texas. Findings revealed that cultural discontinuity had an inverse relationship with GPA; therefore, the more cultural discontinuity based on Eurocentric cultural values that a student experienced, the lower was the student's GPA.