Co-evolution of social networks and student performance

Sofia Dokuka, Diliara Valeeva, Maria Yudkevich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Peer-effects describe the influence of social environment on individual academic achievements. Social environment is usually considered as a randomly formed group. However, it forms and develops as a result of an individual conscious dynamic choice. Students may initially choose friends among peers with similar level of academic performance, and the influence of close friends on each other's achievements may reveal itself over time. Using stochastic actor- based models, we demarcated the boundaries between social selection and social influence evaluated through academic performance. Having analyzed the dynamics of friendship ties and academic achievements throughout the first year at university, we discovered that students were not guided by the level of academic performance when choosing friends among peers but academic achievements of the latter affected their own performance over time. This could be explained by social segregation of students based on their academic outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-65
Number of pages22
JournalVoprosy Obrazovaniya / Educational Studies Moscow
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Academic achievement
  • Academic outcomes
  • Academic performance
  • Dynamic statistical models
  • Effects of co-learning
  • Friendship ties
  • Higher education
  • Social networks
  • Stochastic actor-based models

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education


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