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01-11-2007 | Original Paper | Uitgave 8/2007

Journal of Youth and Adolescence 8/2007

Educational Aspirations of Male and Female Adolescents from Single-Parent and Two Biological Parent Families: A Comparison of Influential Factors

Tijdschrift:
Journal of Youth and Adolescence > Uitgave 8/2007
Auteurs:
Rashmi Garg, Stella Melanson, Elizabeth Levin
Belangrijke opmerkingen
The research was supported by a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Grant.
Rashmi Garg is an Associate professor in the Department of Psychology at Laurentian University. She received her PhD in 1983 from the University of Ottawa. Basically she is interested in applied research in the areas of educational and psychological measurement and testing. More specifically she is interested in the adolescent's education and career development.
Stella Melanson received a master's degree in Human Development from Laurentian University in 2003. She is working as a research data analysis coordinator for Ontario Early Years Education and Social Planning Council. Her interest is in early childhood education.
Elizabeth Levin is an Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychology at Laurentian University. She received her PhD in 1986 from the University of Waterloo. Her major research interests focus on parenting styles and children's conceptions of parenting.

Abstract

Youth from single-parent families report lower educational aspirations than those from two-parent families. This study explored the influence of background factors (gender, grade, parental education and SES), parental involvement with education, academic self-concept, and peer influences on educational aspirations. The participants were Canadian adolescents; 2751 from two parent and 681 from single-parent families. ANOVA results showed that adolescents from single-parent families scored significantly lower than adolescents from intact families on educational aspirations, and other predictor variables. Hierarchical regression analysis showed that the pattern of relationships between educational aspirations and other factors was very similar for adolescents from both types of families; namely academic self-concept significantly predicted educational aspirations. The family involvement and background factors predicted educational aspirations via academic self-concept. Having academically oriented peers was especially beneficial to adolescents from single-parent families. Implications for intervention programs are discussed.

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