Undermatching and Noncognitive Development during the First Year of College: A Longitudinal Study of College Students in the Netherlands

Gregory C. Wolniak*, Marjolein Muskens

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

The study focuses on the phenomenon of “undermatching” in relation to the development of noncognitive attributes during the first year of college. Particular attention is paid to examining the role of first-generation college student status in moderating these relationships. The analyses utilize longitudinal data from the Netherlands (N = 14,540), to test whether undermatching is associated with noncognitive development, based on measures of academic motivation, college satisfaction, and academic self-efficacy. Results indicate among first-generation students, undermatching predicts positive development of satisfaction with college and academic self-efficacy, net of other social status, demographic, and educational measures. Alternatively, among continuing-generation students, undermatching does not affect noncognitive development. The results were found to be robust to model selection. The discussion and conclusion suggest that undermatching may, in fact, promote positive development of noncognitive attributes for socially mobile students (i.e., students from families with less educational attainment).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)855-884
Number of pages30
JournalResearch in Higher Education
Volume62
Issue number6
Early online date7 Jan 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2021

Keywords

  • academic self-concept
  • achievement
  • college students
  • design
  • education
  • efficacy
  • inequality
  • low-income students
  • mobility
  • netherlands
  • noncognitive development
  • persistence
  • social-class
  • undermatch
  • LOW-INCOME STUDENTS
  • DESIGN
  • EFFICACY
  • Undermatch
  • PERSISTENCE
  • INEQUALITY
  • EDUCATION
  • Netherlands
  • Noncognitive development
  • MOBILITY
  • ACADEMIC SELF-CONCEPT
  • ACHIEVEMENT
  • SOCIAL-CLASS
  • College students

Cite this