To read the full version of this content please select one of the options below:

Being the New Kid: Implications of Within-Year Academic Transitions for Motivational Development in School

Transitions Across Schools and Cultures

ISBN: 978-1-78190-291-2, eISBN: 978-1-78190-292-9

ISSN: 0749-7423

Publication date: 31 October 2012


Few studies in K-12 education have investigated the impact of changing schools during the academic year, or within-year transitions, on student motivation and achievement. Yet, many students face this type of transition, including children from low-income families living in urban areas, students from migrant worker and military families, and students with chronic behavioral problems. The evidence that does exist suggests that when students move between schools during the academic year, they may struggle with academic learning, behavior in school, and social interactions. This chapter approaches within-year academic transitions as a developmental context for student motivation. Drawing upon general systems theories and a specific theory of motivational development, the within-year transition is presented as an environmental demand that may lead to changes in student motivation and shifts in classroom actions, such as engagement. Continuity of subject learning and the formation of relationships are discussed as two challenges to student adjustment over the transition period. Student social and personal resources during the transition period are important factors in determining how a student adapts to a new school in the face of these challenges. Several methodological hurdles and possible approaches to conducting research in this area are discussed, as well as topics in need of additional research in this empirically overlooked area. The chapter concludes with suggestions drawn from the research literature as to how districts, schools, and classroom teachers can help support students transitioning between schools within the academic year.


Marchand, G.C. and Sanders, K. (2012), "Being the New Kid: Implications of Within-Year Academic Transitions for Motivational Development in School", Karabenick, S.A. and Urdan, T.C. (Ed.) Transitions Across Schools and Cultures (Advances in Motivation and Achievement, Vol. 17), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 109-145.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited