How academic achievement spreads: The role of distinct social networks in academic performance diffusion
Behavior diffusion through social networks is a key social process. It may be guided by various factors such as network topology, type of propagated behavior, and the strength of network connections. In this paper, we claim that the type of social interactions is also an important ingredient of behavioral diffusion. We examine the spread of academic achievements of first-year undergraduate students through friendship and study assistance networks, applying stochastic actor-oriented modeling. We show that informal social connections transmit performance while instrumental connections do not. The results highlight the importance of friendship in educational environments and contribute to debates on the behavior spread in social networks.