Local socioeconomic status and paramedic students' academic performance

Research indicates that students of lower socioeconomic status are educationally disadvantaged. This study sought to examine differences in paramedic students' academic performance from counties with varied socioeconomic status in the United States of America. Student performance data and socioeconomic status data were combined for counties within the states of California, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas and Virginia. Linear multiple regression modelling was performed to determine the relationship between income, high school graduation rate, poverty and food insecurity, with first-attempt scores on the Fisdap Paramedic Readiness Exam versions 3 and 4. Linear regression models indicated that there was a significant relationship between county-level income, poverty, graduation rate, food insecurity, and paramedic student academic performance. It remains unclear what type of relationship exists between individual socioeconomic status and individual academic performance of paramedic students. These findings support the future collection of individual student socioeconomic data to identify issues and mitigate impact on academic performance.

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