Gender-specific effects of ecological conditions on college achievement

Nicholas Ehrmann, Douglas S. Massey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


This analysis combines results and models from prior analyses of ecological effects on educational outcomes to specify a comprehensive path model estimated separately for male and female respondents to the National Longitudinal Survey of Freshmen. We find that males are exposed to higher levels of violence and disorder than females, and that the gender gap in such exposure grows as the ecological concentration of minority group members increases. At the same time, however, ecological effects on academic performance appear to be stronger for females than males. In the rare cases where females are exposed to high levels of disorder and violence, the effects on college grades are quite large. Nonetheless, relatively few females experience high exposure to violence and social disorder, and, as a result, male grades are more influenced by the ecological disadvantage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)220-238
Number of pages19
JournalSocial Science Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2008
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Sociology and Political Science


  • Ecology
  • Gender
  • Higher education
  • Neighborhood effects
  • Segregation


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