Saying “I Do” in College: Examining Marital Status and Academic Performance

  •  Selena M. Beard    
  •  Michael R. Langlais    


Marriage as an undergraduate student is not the norm, as only 7% of undergraduate students are married. Therefore, marital status may have negative consequences for college students’ academic performance, as they navigate marital roles simultaneously with other roles, such as that of student. However, relationship quality may predict how well undergraduates perform academically, with individuals in higher quality marriages performing better than those in lower quality marriages. Thus, the goal of this study is to examine how marital status predicts academic performance and whether or not relationship quality moderates this association. Data for this study comes from an online survey of undergraduate students from a university in the Midwestern United States (N = 111, 81.1% female, 87.4% White/Caucasian, 21.2% married). Results revealed that marital status is negatively associated with cumulative grade point average (GPA) and perception of GPA. There were no significant effects of relationship satisfaction, relationship communication, or the interaction of relationship quality and marital status for academic performance. Implications for academic performance and young adult development will be discussed.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • Issn(Print): 1918-7211
  • Issn(Onlne): 1918-722X
  • Started: 2009
  • Frequency: quarterly

Journal Metrics

Journal Metrics

Google-based Impact Factor (2017): 8.48

h-index (January 2018): 24

i10-index (January 2018): 76

h5-index (January 2018): 13

h5-median(January 2018): 22