CitationWirth, Lorinette & Copsey, Megan (2015). Does a Healthier Lifestyle Lead to Educational Success? A Secondary Analysis of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. American Public Health Association 143rd Annual Meeting and Exposition. Chicago, IL.
AbstractBackground: Studies have reported a positive relationship among healthier lifestyles, positive peer relationships, and self-esteem levels in adolescents. However, little information is available on the relationship between healthier lifestyles and academic achievement. As a result, Congress mandated the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to collect data measuring the impact of social environment on adolescent health, leading to the prospective cohort study, National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health). This study explores the relationship between healthier lifestyles and academic achievement (i.e. high school graduation status) in adolescents via secondary data analysis.
Methods: In this study, we analyze data from Wave I and Wave III. Data for effector variables, such as exercise, screen time, and food consumption comes from 6,504 students nationwide in grades 7 through 12 between September 1994 and April 1995 (Wave I). The Wave III sample consists of Wave I respondents who were re-interviewed between August 2001 and April 2002 and were between 18 and 26 years old (N= 4,521). Statistical analysis is performed using software SPSS-20.
Results: A crude binary logistic regression showed no significant association between exercise and graduation status. However, controlling for covariates such as weight, age, socioeconomic status, and mother’s education status should present a more robust analysis. This will be included in our final multivariate logistic regression.
Conclusions: Findings from this study may lead to additional research identifying specific healthy behaviors that can lead to academic success, thereby potentially reducing obesity rates while improving academic achievement.
Reference TypeConference proceeding
Book TitleAmerican Public Health Association 143rd Annual Meeting and Exposition