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Academic failure occurs where the primary aims of education cannot be delivered to the degree that there is a fundamental and ongoing breakdown in a students ability to learn.


There are broad range of causes that have been studied. In many cases there are multiple causes interacting. So for example parents may get divorced, the student gets depressed, gets sleep deprived, so cannot concentrate, their previously poor study skills do not help, they then get poor marks and criticism from teachers, this can lead to alienation, submitting to peer pressure to truant in order to avoid the situation, leading to further delinquency, admission into foster care, further disruption to schooling etc etc. In such circumstances academic failure is one outcome of a long sequence of events that may take many years to unravel.


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  • Pink, William T.(). Academic failure, student social conflict, and delinquent behavior. The Urban Review.

Volume 14, Number 3, 141-180, DOI: 10.1007/BF02171928 pdf

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