Pub. date: 2006 | Online Pub. Date: September 15, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412939584 | Print ISBN: 9780761930877 | Online ISBN: 9781412939584| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Underachievers, in Schools
Little consensus exists in the educational literature about the definition of underachievement , particularly concerning how it is measured or to whom it applies. Yet the term is used often by academics, practitioners, journalists, and politicians somewhat indiscriminately in describing poor academic performance in school without any clarity about to what the underachievement relates. At times underachievement refers to the relationship between an individual's perceived innate ability to learn and actual learning performance, while at other times it refers to comparisons between an individual's performance with that of a larger group. The lack of a universally accepted definition of underachievement in the literature requires the presentation of an operational definition in this context. Hence, underachievement is defined here as a discrepancy between expected and actual academic achievement by an individual, particularly among those students who possess the cognitive ability to achieve at high levels. The term underachievement appears to Through ...