The effect of parents' education on the academic and non-cognitive outcomes of their children: Evidence from China

Weidong Wang*, Yongqing Dong, Xiaohong Liu, Yunli Bai, Linxiu Zhang

Journal Title: Children and Youth Services Review

Volume/Issue/Page: Volume 117, October 2020, 105307

Published Time: 2 August 2020


We use a nationally representative dataset, called China Education Panel Survey, to examine the causal effect of parental education on child educational performance and non-cognitive outcomes. Our results show that parental education plays a positive role in children’s academic performance, with the father’s education having a more pronounced impact on child academic performance than the mother’s. We also conclude that mother’s education has a greater influence on the non-cognitive outcomes of the child. The authors conclude by providing some clues as to possible mechanisms behind these findings. The results show that more educated parents have higher educational expectations for their children, and manage their children’s daily lives more stringently. Their children also engage in academic activities during their leisure time more often. Furthermore, parents with higher education levels are able to bring about stronger family relationships.

Keywords: Parental education, Educational performance, Non-cognitive outcomes, Parental involvement, Middle school

Corresponding author: Weidong Wang,


Related Sustainable Development Goals
Related CEL Areas