HARC (Heterogeneity and reading competence: The role of institutional and home learning environment)

Not for the first time has PISA shown that the educational success of children is associated with their (social) family background.  One explanation for this is that children from precarious situations, when compared to children whose parents have a secure status in society, might find themselves in a learning environment which does not stimulate engagement with the German language as much.  The school, however, is now also an important learning place for children.  It can offer opportunities to children from all social backgrounds and have a compensatory effect.

In the DFG-funded research project “Diversity and Reading Skills – The Role of Home and Institutional Learning Environment”, we investigate how children’s reading skills develop from kindergarten through elementary school, and how exactly the two learning environments contribute.  A particular focus is placed on the analysis of differentiated effects: Do both learning environments affect children from different backgrounds in the same manner and in the same amount?  Do these two learning environments build on each other?  Do children with a less stimulating home learning environment benefit equally from a stimulating institutional learning environment as children who already encounter such an environment at home?

Using data from the National Educational Panel Study (NEPS), this longitudinal study ranging from kindergarten to second grade analyzes whether and to what extent differential effects of learning environments are seen for children in so-called high-risk groups and non-high-risk groups.
This project is a part of the special priority program “Education as a Lifelong Process (SPP 1646)”.


Project leadership:

  • Prof. Dr. Nadine Spörer
  • Prof. Dr. Guido Nottbusch
  • Research Group Diversity & Inclusion