Racial differences in academic achievement among juvenile offenders

Andrew Tesoro, Kristin C. Thompson, Richard J. Morris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Racial differences were examined in academic achievement among a large, diverse juvenile delinquent population in the Southwestern United States. Participant data were collected from the University of Arizona Juvenile Delinquency Project (UAJDP) database. Academic measures included school absences; grade point average; standardized reading, writing, and math achievement scores; and, special education placement. Results showed significant differences among racial groups on all measures of academic achievement. Whites had higher passage rates on standardized tests in math, reading, and writing, as well as higher GPA, compared to all racial minorities except for Asians. Native-American youth performed lower on most academic measures compared to other racial groups and had significantly more absences than any other racial group. Moreover, Whites had the highest rates of special education whereas Asians had the lowest. Implications of these findings are discussed in terms of future research and public policy issues.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)207-212
Number of pages6
JournalLearning and Individual Differences
StatePublished - Dec 1 2014


  • Academic achievement
  • Juvenile delinquents
  • Racial differences

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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