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Electronic Theses, Treatises and Dissertations The Graduate School

2008

The Relationship Between Parenting


Style and Academic Achievement and the
Mediating Influences of Motivation, Goal-
Orientation and Academic Self-Efficacy
Jewrell Rivers

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FLORIDA STATE UNIVERSITY

COLLEGE OF HUMAN SCIENCES

THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN PARENTING STYLE AND ACADEMIC

ACHIEVEMENT AND THE MEDIATING INFLUENCES OF

MOTIVATION, GOAL-ORIENTATION AND ACADEMIC SELF-EFFICACY

BY

JEWRELL RIVERS, JR.

A Dissertation submitted to the


Department of Family and Child Sciences
in partial fulfillment of the
requirements for the degree of
Doctor of Philosophy

Degree Awarded:
Summer Semester, 2008
The members of the Committee approved the dissertation of Jewrell Rivers, Jr.
defended on Monday, October 23, 2006.

____________________________________________
Ronald Mullis
Professor Directing Dissertation

____________________________________________
Gary Peterson
Outside Committee Member

____________________________________________
Ann Mullis
Committee Member

Received:

_________________________________________________
Kay Pasley, Chair, Department of Family and Child Sciences

___________________________________________________
Billie Collier, Dean, College of Human Sciences

The Office of Graduate Studies has verified and approved the above named committee
members.

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

I would like to sincerely acknowledge the following individuals for their significant
contributions to this research project:

Dr. Ronald Mullis, major professor and mentor

Dr. Ann Mullis, mentor and committee member

Dr. William English, teacher and committee member

Dr. Gary Peterson, statistician and committee member

Dr. Mary Ann Moore, Dean

Dr. Kay Pasley, Department Head

Dr. Jerry Hardee, mentor

Dr. Chet Ballard, mentor and teacher

Dr. Shani Gray, statistician

Bishop and Sister Quarterman, Pastors

Elder and Mother Williams, Pastors

Mr. and Mrs. Jewrell Rivers, Sr., parents

Mrs. Suzanne Rivers, wife, and Adrian, Austin and Joshua Rivers, sons

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

LIST OF TABLES........................................................................................................... vii

ABSTRACT.................................................................................................................... viii

I. INTRODUCTION ................................................................................................. 9

Theoretical Framework........................................................................................ 12

Statement of the Problem..................................................................................... 13

Purpose of the Study ............................................................................................ 13

Research Questions.............................................................................................. 14

Hypotheses........................................................................................................... 14

Definition of Terms.............................................................................................. 14

Significance of the Project ................................................................................... 15

II. REVIEW OF LITERATURE .............................................................................. 16

Overview.............................................................................................................. 16

Parenting Style ..................................................................................................... 16

Parenting Style and Academic Achievement....................................................... 17

Parenting Style, Race and Ethnicity..................................................................... 18

Parenting Style, Socioeconomic Status, Peer Support and Neighborhood Risk.. 19

Parenting Style and Parental Involvement........................................................... 21

Motivation............................................................................................................ 22

Motivation and Parenting Style ........................................................................... 24

Goal Orientation................................................................................................... 25

Goal Orientation and Motivation ......................................................................... 26

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Goal Orientation, Motivation and Parenting Style .............................................. 27

Academic Self-Efficacy ....................................................................................... 29

Academic Self-Efficacy, Goal Orientation and Motivation ................................ 30

Summary.............................................................................................................. 31

III. METHODS .......................................................................................................... 32

Participants........................................................................................................... 32

Measures .............................................................................................................. 34

Procedures............................................................................................................ 37

Data Analysis ....................................................................................................... 38

IV. RESULTS ............................................................................................................ 39

Statistical Analysis............................................................................................... 40

Summary.............................................................................................................. 45

Additional Findings ............................................................................................. 46

V. DISCUSSION ...................................................................................................... 48

Implications for Future Practice........................................................................... 54

Implications for Future Research......................................................................... 55

Executive Summary............................................................................................. 56

APPENDICES

A. Statement on Human Subjects Committee Approval .............................. 57

B. Statement on Permission from Tift and Cook County Schools ............... 59

C. Statement on Permission to use Standardized Instruments...................... 62

D. Copies of Standardized Instruments ........................................................ 63

E. Instructions for Standardized Administration of Measures ................... 108

v
F. Copies of Consent Forms....................................................................... 111

G. Tables..................................................................................................... 115

REFERENCES .............................................................................................................. 127

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ......................................................................................... 141

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LIST OF TABLES

Table 1 Demographic Characteristics of the Study Sample ..................................... 116

Table 2 Means and Standard Deviations for Scale Variables................................... 118

Table 3 Correlations between Parenting Style and Criterion Variables ................... 119

Table 4 Correlations between Parenting Style and Motivation Subscales................ 119

Table 5 Correlations between Parenting Styles and Goal Orientation Subscales..... 119

Table 6 Correlations between Parenting Style and Academic Self-Efficacy............ 120

Table 7 Hierarchal Regression of GPA on Predictor Variables................................ 121

Table 8 Significance Results from Correlations ....................................................... 123

Table 9 Significance Results from Regression Models ............................................ 123

Table 10 Correlations between Demographic Variables and Criterion Variables...... 124

Table 11 ANOVA Comparison of Math GPA, English GPA, Science GPA, Social
Science GPA and Grade Point Average as a Function of Sex..................... 124

Table 12 ANOVA Comparison of Math GPA, English GPA, Science GPA, Social
Science GPA and Grade Point Average as a Function of Race................... 125

Table 13 ANOVA Comparison of Math GPA, English GPA, Science GPA, Social
Science GPA and Grade Point Average as a Function of Plans After High
School .......................................................................................................... 125

Table 14 ANOVA Comparison of Parenting Style, Motivation, Goal Orientation and


Academic Self-Efficacy as a Function of Plans After High School ............ 125

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ABSTRACT

The purpose of the study was to test the relationship between parenting style and
academic achievement, and to examine the mediating effects of motivation, goal
orientation and academic self-efficacy on this relationship. The researcher surveyed 148
high school students from rural, south central Georgia. Demographically, the sample was
comprised of 39% male, 61% female, 36% African American and 53% White. In regard
to grade level, 68% were 11th graders, and 13% were 12th graders and 12% were 10th
graders. Approximately 93% were college-prep and the students came from eight rural
counties.
Measures included the Parenting Style and Parental Involvement Questionnaire
(PSPI), the Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic Orientation Scale, the Patterns of Adapted Learning
Survey (PALS), and a demographic questionnaire. The Parenting Style and Parental
Involvement Questionnaire was used to measure students perceptions of parenting style.
The Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic Orientation Scale was used to measure students motivation.
The Patterns of Adapted Learning Survey was used to measure both goal orientation and
academic self-efficacy.
Correlations, hierarchal multiple regression and analysis of variance (ANOVA)
were the analyses used for the study. The researcher found a significant correlation
between parenting style and the motivation subscales. The hierarchal regression analysis
revealed that only the motivation subscales mediated parenting style in contributing a
significant amount of incremental variance in explaining academic achievement. The
analysis of variance indicated that all of the criterion measures of academic achievement
differed significantly as a function of plans after high school. Additionally, math GPA,
english GPA, science GPA and grade point average differed as a function of race, and
only english GPA differed as a function of sex.
Recommendations for future practice include more incorporation of intrinsic
motivation in teaching strategies, guidance and parenting as a means to improve
achievement outcomes. Also, the researcher recommends more collaboration and
networking among students, parents, teachers, guidance counselors and peer leaders. For
future research, the researcher recommends that school administrators and board
members should commit all grades to the research study and follow-up the research
utilization effort as a complete system buy-in to the process.

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CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION

The academic achievement of adolescents has been a major concern of educators


for years. As documented in the research literature, adolescent achievement has been
associated with several outcomes such as delinquency (Sampson & Laub, 1993; Wiesner
& Silbereisen, 2003), psychopathology (Kurdek, 1987; McDermott, Steinberg & Angelo,
2005), substance abuse (Engel, Nordlohne, Hurrelman & Holler, 1987; Wright &
Fitzpatrick, 2004; Lillehoj, Trudeau & Spoth, 2005) and educational and occupational
attainment (Coleman, 1961, Jencks, 1972; Marjoribanks, 2005; Kirkpatrick, Elder &
Stern, 2005). Furthermore, adolescent underachievement is a rising social problem
(Mooney, Knox & Schacht, 2002).
According to Bruno and Adams (1994), disturbing percentages of high school
students are scoring below grade level. Academic achievement of adolescents worsens
when comparing achievement data from 1983 and 1993. For example, both the numbers
of adolescents of 12 to 14 years of age performing below grade level in 1993 and the
comparison data from 1983 and 1993 indicated that the number of low achieving
adolescents appears to be growing. Male adolescents were found to perform at lower
academic levels between the ages of 15 to 17. In addition, the number of females of all
races performing below grade level have increased by 1.3 percent between the ages of 12
to 14 and 15 to 17. However, the numbers of African and Hispanic American females
below grade level continues to worsen slightly (from 33.2 % to 34.6% and 28.3% to 29.3
% respectively) during the 12 to 14 and the 15 to 17 year range (Bruno & Adams, 1994).
More recent data has also underscored consistent disparities in achievement due
to race and gender (U.S. Department of Education, 2000). Some of the achievement gaps
have become more evident during adolescence. Based on the trend data, achievement
disparities as a function of race have been more pronounced. For example, according to
the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), white students had higher
average reading scores than their black peers. The gap between white and black students
in reading narrowed between 1971 and 1999 in each age group (e.g., 9-year olds, 13-year
olds, 17-year olds). However, since 1999 it has widened somewhat at ages 13 and 17
(U.S. Department of Education, 2000). Also based on the U.S. Department of Education
(2000) data, in 1999 white students had higher average mathematics and science scores
than their black peers. In regard to mathematics scores, the gap between white and black
students narrowed between 1973 and 1999 in each age group. However, some widening
was evident since 1986 at age 13, and since 1990 at each 17. In regard to science scores,
the gap between white and black students generally narrowed since 1970 for 9 and
13-year olds, but not for 17-year olds.
In addition, disparities in gender still persist, but are not as pronounced and
statistically significant. For example, in 1999 female adolescents had higher average
reading scores than male students in each age group. However, the gap among the
13-year olds and the 17-year olds widened between males and females between 1971 and
1999 (U.S. Department of Education, 2000). The apparent difference between male and
female students average mathematics scores was not significant at any age. Among
17-year olds, the score gap that had favored male students in the 1970s ultimately
disappeared, and by 1999 the difference was no longer statistically significant. In 1999
males outperformed females in science at ages 13 and 17. Among 17-year olds, the score

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gap between males and females has narrowed since 1969 (U.S. Department of Education,
2000).
Not only have differences in achievement outcomes related to race and gender,
but motivation has also been examined as a contributing factor. Recent studies have
supported the differential impact of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation on academic
outcomes (Broussard & Garrison, 2004; Lepper, Corpus & Iyengar, 2005; Otis, Grouzet
& Pelletier, 2005). For example, Broussard and Garrison (2004) found the relationship
between motivational orientation and academic outcomes to be a function of grade level.
The researchers found that higher levels of intrinsic motivation were associated with
higher math and reading grades in third graders. In addition, the findings of the
researchers indicated that among third graders higher levels of extrinsic motivation also
contributed to higher math and reading grades. However, among the first graders, higher
levels of intrinsic motivation were related to higher math and reading grades, whereas
higher levels of extrinsic motivation were not (Broussard & Garrison, 2004).
Similarly, Lepper, Corpus and Iyengar (2005) provide findings that support grade
level as a function of the relationship between motivational orientation and academic
outcomes. The researchers found that even though intrinsic motivation significantly
decreased from third to eighth grade, intrinsic motivation was positively correlated with
academic achievement. Few differences in extrinsic motivation were found across grade
levels, and extrinsic motivation correlated negatively with academic outcomes (Lepper,
Corpus & Iyengar, 2005).
As further support of grade level as a determinant of the link between
motivational orientation and academic outcomes, Otis, Grouzet and Pelletier (2005)
found that intrinsic and extrinsic motivation decreased gradually from eighth grade to
tenth grade. Also, they observed negative academic outcomes for students experiencing a
decline in extrinsic motivation during the transitional year and students experiencing a
decline in intrinsic motivation during the year after transition (Otis, Grouzet & Pelletier,
2005). Despite these findings, Baker (2004) found no differential effects of intrinsic and
extrinsic motivation on academic outcomes. Findings indicated that intrinsic or extrinsic
motivation was not related to subsequent academic achievement (Baker, 2004).
Other important variables associated with academic outcomes of adolescents have
been mastery and performance goal orientation. For example, Dupeyrat and Marine
(2005) found that mastery goal orientation had a positive impact on learning activities
and outcomes, whereas performance goal orientation had a negative influence on learning
activities and outcomes. Dupeyrat and Marine noted that mastery goal orientation had a
positive influence on academic achievement through the mediation of effort expenditure.
In addition, Tanaka and Yamauchi (2001) found that mastery goal orientation was
positively correlated with intrinsic interest and academic achievement, whereas
performance goal orientation had no significant effect on intrinsic interest or academic
achievement.
Other studies have failed to provide any evidence of a clear distinction between
the differential effects on goal orientation on academic outcomes. Such difficulty may be
derived from the lack of certainty associated with the relationship between mastery goal
orientation and achievement (Harackiewicz, Barron, Carter, Letho & Elliot, 1997; Meece
et al., 1988), the indirect influence of mastery goal orientation on performance outcomes

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(Greene & Miller, 1996; Nolen, 1988), and the differential impact of performance goal
orientation on academic outcomes (Ames, 1992; Giota, 2002).
To address such contradictions in the research literature, current perspectives
incorporating revised achievement goal theory have emphasized more specific
distinctions of goal orientation and a multiple-goals approach. The revised achievement
goal theory framework consists of mastery orientation, which focuses on engaging in
tasks for the sake of improvement in learning; performance-approach orientation, which
focuses on engaging in a task for the sake of outperforming others; and performance-
avoidance, which focuses on avoiding tasks for the sake to prevent embarrassment or
shame. Current studies emphasizing the influence of goal orientation on academic
outcomes have embraced these viewpoints. For example, Shih (2005) found that mastery
approach orientation, performance-approach orientation and performance-avoidance
orientation predicted distinctive patterns of learning. Also, Riveiro, Cabanach and Arias
(2001) found that only those students who reported a high mastery goal orientation
exhibited more frequent use of cognitive and self-regulatory strategies. However, when
multiple goals were taken into account, students who exhibited the most positive self-
regulation were characterized as being influenced by both mastery approach and
performance-approach goals (Riveiro, Cabanach & Arais, 2001).
Regardless of the supportive evidence presented by current studies on revised
achievement goal theory, there still remain some contradictions in the research literature.
Some studies have indicated the detrimental effects performance-approach goals on
academic outcomes despite previous findings that postulate the positive influence of
performance-approach goals. For example, Linnenbrink (2005) found that mastery
approach goals were beneficial for achievement, whereas performance-approach goals
were detrimental contributing to lower achievement and greater test anxiety
(Linnenbrink, 2005). Additionally, Sideridis (2003) found that mastery approach
orientation was a positive predictor of academic growth and a negative predictor of
helplessness, whereas performance-avoidance was a positive predictor of helplessness
and a negative predictor of academic growth. However, performance-approach
orientation had no significant effect on academic achievement, but was a consistent
negative predictor of attributes of helplessness (Sideridis, 2003).
Recently researchers have emphasized the moderating role of self-efficacy on the
relationship between motivational variables (e.g., intrinsic/extrinsic motivation,
mastery/performance goal orientation) and academic outcomes. For example, Leondari
and Gialamas (2002) found that goal orientations had an indirect effect on academic
achievement due to the moderating effect of self-efficacy (Leondari & Gialamas, 2002).
Additionally, Alfassi (2003) found that although there was a significant relationship
between measures of self-efficacy and motivation scales among the groups, motivational
orientation did not impact group achievement scores. However, study results supported
the contention of social cognitive theory that self-efficacy moderates mastery goal
experiences in order to produce higher achievement outcomes (Bandura, 1997; Alfassi,
2003). Finally, Braten, Samuelstuen and Stromso (2004) found that perceived self-
efficacy moderated the relation between performance-avoidance goals and reported use
of self-regulatory strategies in a competitive, performance-oriented context.
In addition to the influence of individual factors, a great wealth of literature on
academic achievement of adolescents has included research emphasizing the impact of

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parenting style. Baumrinds typology on parenting styles (1971) has been used to
examine the differential impact of authoritative parenting and authoritarian parenting on
developmental outcomes. Furthermore, Macoby and Martin (1983) expanded Baumrinds
typology to include the detrimental effects of permissive parenting in addition to
authoritative and authoritarian parenting styles.
Authoritative parents are characterized as having a high degree of responsiveness
and warmth, combined with mutual reciprocation toward their children in setting rules
and limits. Authoritative parents exhibit a low to moderate level of control and
demandingness. Authoritarian parents are characterized as having a high degree of
control and demandingness, with no openness toward their childrens input regarding
rules and limits. Authoritarian parents are extremely strict and exhibit little if any
responsiveness or warmth.
Permissive parents are categorized as either indulgent or neglectful. Indulgent
parents are characterized by a high degree of responsiveness and warmth, but exhibit no
control or demandingeness in setting rules or limits. Neglectful parents do not exhibit any
degree of either responsiveness or warmth, nor do they exercise any degree of control or
demandingness.
Parenting style has been examined in several studies as a strong predictor of
adolescent achievement outcomes (McBride-Chang & Chang, 1998; Bronstein &
Duncan, 1996; Wintre & Yaffe, 2000). Findings have indicated that a significant
relationship exists between the type of parenting style and academic achievement. In fact,
some researchers have proposed that the authoritative parenting is associated with higher
academic achievement (Steinberg, Lamborn, Dornbusch and Darling, 1992; Hickman,
Bartholomae & McKenry, 2000).
Although recent studies have supported the significant influence of parenting style
on academic achievement, such findings have not been consistent across different
cultures, ethnicity and socioeconomic status (Spera, 2005). For example, Hae-Seong and
Bauer (2002) found that European Americans are more authoritative than other ethnic
groups, but the relationship between authoritative parenting and student academic
achievement is supported only for the majority group. Furthermore, Joshi, Ferris, Otto
and Regan (2003) in studying an ethnically diverse group of college students, found that
parenting style scores were unrelated to college GPA, and that additional analyses of the
ethnic groups indicated differences in maternal involvement and strictness and
relationship of these variables to GPA.

Theoretical Frameworks

Baumrinds typology on parenting styles will be used to provide a theoretical


framework for investigating parenting style as a predictor of academic achievement
among adolescents. Achievement goal theory and social cognitive theory will be used to
examine the mediating influences of motivation, goal orientation and academic self-
efficacy on the relationship between parenting style and academic achievement.
Achievement goal theory will provide a theoretical framework for investigating the
differential influence of mastery goal and performance goal orientations on parenting
styles and academic outcomes, whereas social cognitive theory will present a working

12
model for examining the mediating influence of academic self-efficacy on the
relationship between goal orientation and academic outcomes.

Statement of the Problem

Recent studies have challenged the notion that authoritative parenting promotes
higher academic achievement, noting that contextual variables such as race, ethnicity and
culture should be considered and controlled for in examining this relationship (Weiss &
Schwartz, 1996). In addition, some researchers have proposed a reconceptualization of
the authoritative parenting style as well as consideration of middle-range categories of
parenting style in regard to its impact on academic achievement (Gray & Steinberg, 1999;
Slicker, 1996). Still other researchers have concluded that, unlike previous studies, non-
White adolescents and their parents were largely unclassifiable in the traditional
parenting style dimensions and that there exists an apparent need for a broader
conceptualization of parenting style (McBride-Chang & Chang, 1998).
Based on contradictory findings in the literature on the effect of parenting style on
academic achievement, there exists a need to further examine the contention that
authoritative parenting promotes higher academic achievement among adolescents. Also,
due to evidence in the literature that calls for a reconceptualization of the traditional
parenting style dimensions, the generalizability among all racial and ethnic groups of the
impact of authoritative parenting on achievement outcomes remains questionable.
To add to previously noted contradictions, the effect of parenting style on
academic achievement should also be examined in view of the influence of the mediating
variables of motivation, goal orientation, and self-efficacy. Parenting style is basically a
contextual variable, but within the parenting environment (in which specific parenting
behaviors are employed to promote achievement) other individual factors may develop
(e.g., goal orientation, motivation, self-efficacy) that may serve to mediate or strengthen
the proposed relationship between parenting style and academic achievement. Therefore,
it is educationally meaningful and necessary to test the generalizability of the relationship
between parenting style and academic achievement among adolescents, and investigate
the extent to which authoritative parenting promotes higher achievement outcomes
despite other mediating variables such as motivation, goal orientation, and self-efficacy.

Purpose of the Study

The theoretical frameworks of Baumrinds typology, achievement goal theory and social
cognitive theory will be used to provide a working model for understanding the
relationship between the predictor variable (e.g., parenting style) and the criterion
variable (e.g., academic achievement) and the impact of mediating variables upon this
relationship. The purpose of the study will be two-fold: (1) to test the relationship
between parenting style and academic achievement; and (2) to examine the extent to
which the variables of motivation, goal orientation, and self-efficacy mediate the
relationship between parenting style and academic achievement.

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Research Questions

Based on Baumrinds typology of parenting styles, Dweck and Leggetts


framework on goal orientation and Banduras Social Cognitive Theory on self-efficacy,
the following research questions and hypotheses will be proposed for the study:

Research Question 1: What are the relationships between parenting style and academic
achievement with respect to motivation, goal orientation and
academic efficacy among high school students?

Hypothesis 1: There will be a positive relationship between parenting


style and academic achievement.

Hypothesis 2: There will be a positive relationship between parenting


style and motivation.

Hypothesis 3: There will be a positive relationship between parenting


style and goal orientation.

Hypothesis 4: There will be a positive relationship between parenting


style and academic self-efficacy.

Research Question 2: What are the mediating effects of motivation, goal orientation
and academic efficacy on the relationship between parenting
style and academic achievement of high school adolescents?

Hypothesis 5: Motivation, goal orientation and academic self-


efficacy will mediate the relationship between parenting style and
academic achievement.

Definition of Terms

Adolescents. Adolescents will be defined as high school students from Tift, Cook,
Turner, Berrien, Worth, Atkinson, Ben Hill, and Colquitt counties ranging from ages 14
19 years.
Academic Achievement. Academic achievement will be defined in terms of grade
point average obtained from self-report questionnaires.
Parenting style. Parenting style will be defined in terms of Baumrinds typological
categories: authoritarian and authoritative. Adolescents perceived parenting style will be
measured by using the Parenting Style and Parental Involvement Questionnaire (Paulson,
1994).
Motivation. Motivation will be conceptualized in terms of intrinsic and extrinsic
motivation. Motivation will be measured by using the Scale of Intrinsic versus Extrinsic
Motivation (Harter, 1981).
Goal orientation. Goal orientation will be conceptualized in terms of mastery
orientation, performance approach and performance avoidance orientation. Goal

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orientation will be measured by using Midgleys Patterns of Adapted Learning Survey
(Midgley et al.,1996).
Self-efficacy. Self-efficacy will be specified in terms of academic self-efficacy
which denotes an adolescents cognitive judgment concerning their ability to master an
academic task and produce favorable outcomes. Academic self-efficacy will be measured
by using items from Midgleys Patterns of Adapted Learning Survey (Midgley et al.,
1996).

Significance of the Project

The significance of the project will be to inform stakeholders of the potential


predictors of higher achievement outcomes. Of particular benefit is the focus of the study
on non-cognitive or psycho-social predictors of academic achievement. The study will
provide other researchers with insight on significant gaps in the literature concerning
predictors of achievement outcomes, especially regarding the relationship between
parenting style and academic achievement. The study will benefit teachers in helping
them to understand the importance of motivation, goal orientation and academic self-
efficacy as these factors relate to engaging students in academic tasks. The study will aid
parents in allowing them to realize the influence of the parenting environment and
parenting style as a contextual element in shaping achievement outcomes. Finally, the
study will help students to develop their potential as they discover the role of motivation,
goal orientation and self-efficacy in adapting to diverse learning situations.

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CHAPTER 2: REVIEW OF LITERATURE

The attention given to achievement outcomes by researchers is widely represented


in the literature. According to the research literature, a vast array of factors may serve as
moderating or mediating influences, or have direct or indirect effects upon achievement
outcomes. For this reason, examining the true predictability of any single variable upon
academic achievement may become a rather complicated endeavor.
Researchers have associated academic achievement with several individual
variables including motivation, goal orientation and self-efficacy (Gottfried, Fleming, &
Gottfried, 2001; Dweck & Leggett, 1988; Bandura, 1997, Schunk, 1991). However, a
number of social and cultural factors have also been found to contribute to higher
achievement outcomes. Contextual factors such as social capital, parental involvement,
peer support, parenting style and cultural capital can provide explanations for the
variance of achievement outcomes among different groups (Mullis, Rathge & Mullis,
2003; Coleman, 1988, 1990; Steinberg, Lamborn, Dornbusch & Darling, 1992; Gonzales,
Cauce, Friedman, & Mason, 1996; McBride-Chang & Chang, 1998; Bronstein &
Duncan, 1996; Wintre & Yaffe, 2000; Lareau, 1987, 1989).
The research literature provides a wide range of studies that emphasize numerous
predictors of achievement outcomes. However, examination of the literature also presents
contradictions and relevant gaps in empirical support pertaining to the strength of several
variables as predictors of academic achievement, and relationships between numerous
variables of interest. Previous studies have emphasized the variables of parenting style,
motivation, goal orientation, and self-efficacy as common predictors of achievement,
emphasized the interactions between these variables, and underscored the mediating
influences that may impact their relationship on academic achievement.
Parenting Style
Based on Baumrinds theoretical framework (1971), the authoritative parenting
style is more likely to promote a high degree of self-control and social competence in
children, whereas the authoritarian, indulgent and neglectful parenting styles (both
permissive styles) contribute to low self-control and lack of social competence (Paulson,
1994). Therefore, Baumrind contends that authoritative parenting is associated with more
positive outcomes, whereas authoritarian, indulgent and neglectful parenting styles are
more likely to lead to negative outcomes. Similarly, other studies in the literature propose
that significant differences between parenting style groups exist in regard to positive and
negative outcomes (Cohen & Rice, 1997; Pittman & Chase-Lansdale, 2001).

Parenting Style and Negative Outcomes

For example, Cohen and Rice (1997) examined the relevance of parenting style
and negative outcomes among a sample of 386 matched parent-child pairs. Surveys were
used to measure perceptions of parenting style and negative behaviors associated with
substance abuse. Results indicated students who smoke and drink perceive their parents
as less authoritative and more permissive (indulgent) than students who did not smoke or
drink.
Pittman and Chase-Lansdale (2001) investigated the associations between
multiple negative adolescent outcomes and parenting in a sample of African American

16
girls from high-poverty neighborhoods in the inner city. Questionnaires, scales and other
self-report instruments coupled with extensive interviews were used to explore the
influence of parenting style on several adolescent negative outcomes such as
delinquency, depression, cognitive distress and incidence of sexual intercourse.
In terms of delinquency, results indicated that adolescents with disengaged
(neglectful) mothers exhibited more minor delinquent behaviors than teenagers with
authoritative, authoritarian and permissive (indulgent) mothers, and more major
delinquent behaviors than teenagers with authoritative mothers. Adolescent girls with
authoritative mothers exhibited fewer minor delinquent behaviors than those with
permissive (indulgent) mothers, as well as fewer major delinquent behaviors than those
with authoritarian mothers. In regard to depression, teenagers with disengaged
(neglectful) mothers were more likely to be depressed than teenagers with mothers who
displayed any other parenting style.
In terms of sexual outcomes, adolescents with authoritative mothers were less
likely to have had sexual intercourse than adolescents with mothers who displayed any
other parenting style, and adolescents with permissive (indulgent) mothers were less
likely to have had sexual intercourse than adolescents with disengaged (neglectful)
mothers. Additionally, among those adolescents who had experienced sex, those with
disengaged (neglectful) mothers experienced sexual intercourse at a younger age than
those with authoritative mothers and adolescents with authoritative mothers were less
likely to have ever been pregnant, compared with adolescents with either authoritarian or
permissive (indulgent) mothers.

Parenting Style and Academic Achievement

In regard to positive outcomes, the examination of the relationship between


parenting style and academic achievement is among the most pervasive in the research
literature. Several studies in the literature propose that the authoritative parenting style is
associated with higher academic achievement (Steinberg, Lamborn, Dornbusch &
Darling, 1992; Hickman, Bartholomae, & McKenry, 2000).
Cohen and Rice (1997) surveyed a sample of 386 matched parent-child pairs in
order to examine the relevance of parenting style to adolescent educational achievement.
Results indicated that students with low grades rated their parents as less authoritative,
more permissive (indulgent) and more authoritarian than did students with high grades.
Based on the study results, researchers concluded that perceived authoritative parenting
by students was associated with higher academic achievement.
Paulson (1994) investigated the relationship between parenting characteristics and
achievement among a sample of 247 adolescents. Standardized scales were used to
operationalize parenting style in order to examine its association to academic
achievement which was measures by adolescent self-reported grades. Results indicated
that higher levels of parental control accompanied by both maternal and paternal
responsiveness (characteristic of authoritative parenting) were related to higher academic
achievement. Paulson concluded that authoritative parents have children who perform
better in schools.
Steinberg, Lamborn, Dornbusch and Darling (1992) examined the impact of
authoritative parenting on the school achievement of an ethnically and socioeconomically

17
heterogeneous sample of 6400 American 14-18 year olds. Standardized scales and other
self-report instruments were used to assess the relationship between parenting style and
academic outcomes. The results indicated that authoritative parenting had a significant
impact on adolescent school performance during the high school years. This was seen in
both the significant correlations between authoritativeness and and the indices of
achievement as well as in the comparison of academic scores among adolescents from
households varying in authoritativeness. On both indices, adolescents from clearly
authoritative homes scored higher than their peers from homes that were neither
unquestionably nonauthoritative or unquestionably authoritative, who in turn scored
higher than students from definitely nonauthoritative homes. The researchers concluded
that authoritative parenting promotes better academic achievement, and students who
describe their parents as authoritative report better school performance.
Gonzales, Cauce, Friedman and Mason (1996) investigated the influence of
parenting variables on the school performance of 120 African American junior high
students. Instruments included maternal reports of parenting variables and adolescent
self-reports of grade point average. Results indicated that maternal support and the
presence of warm, affectionate parent-child relationships (characteristic of authoritative
parenting) have a significant influence on all positive child development outcomes
including academic achievement. It was further concluded by the researchers that
maternal support had a significant effect on adolescent grades.
Pittman and Chase-Lansdale (2001) explored associations between parenting and
multiple adolescent outcomes in a sample of 302 adolescent girls and their female
caregivers from impoverished neighborhoods. A mixed methods design involving
standardized instruments and in-depth interviews was used to examine the influence of
parenting style on academic achievement. Results indicated that parenting style groups
were significantly related to teenagers reported grades, and adolescents with disengaged
(neglectful) mothers had significantly lower grades than adolescents with mothers who
displayed any other parenting style. The researchers concluded that adolescent girls with
authoritative mothers showed the best adjustment of all parenting style groups, while
girls with disengaged (neglectful) mothers showed the worst adjustment of all parenting
style groups.

Parenting Style, Race and Ethnicity

However, recent studies have challenged the conclusion that authoritative


parenting promotes higher academic achievement, noting that other variables such as
race, ethnicity and socioeconomic status should be considered and controlled for in
examining this relationship (Weiss & Schwartz, 1996). In addition, some researchers
have proposed a reconceptualization of the authoritative parenting style as well as
consideration of middle-range categories of parenting style in considering its impact on
academic achievement (Gray & Steinberg, 1999; Slicker, 1996).
For example, McBride-Chang and Chang (1998) in their investigation of the
relationship between parenting style and academic achievement, attempted to examine
the extent to which Hong Kong adolescents and their parents could be classified as
permissive (indulgent), authoritarian and authoritative based on scores on a parenting
subscale compared to predetermined mean and standard deviation. Based on the results

18
from this classification scheme, most of the Hong Kong adolescents and parents were
found to be undifferentiated and did not fit a particular category. Researchers concluded
that, unlike previous studies, Hong Kong adolescents and parents were largely
unclassifiable in the traditional parenting style dimensions and there exists an apparent
need for a broader conceptualization of parenting style.
Lueng, Lau and Lam (1998) in their examination of cross-cultural generalizability
of the relationship between parenting style and academic achievement, incorporated a
new proposed approach by Chao and Sue (1996) which places more emphasis on parental
control and the authoritarian behaviors of Asian parents. Within the context of Asian
culture, this model further classifies the concepts of parental authoritarianism and
parental authoritativeness into two different aspects: general and academic. The
researchers incorporated the additional classifications of parenting style in order to
determine which aspect, general or academic, has a greater influence on school
performance.
A standardized questionnaire was used to measure dimensions of parenting style
conceptualized by Chao and Sue (1996) and school performance was measured by self-
reported grades. Study conclusions were supportive of Chao and Sues newly proposed
model emphasizing the importance of parental control and authoritarian behavior of
Asian parents, but not supportive of Baumrinds typology which suggests that
authoritarian parenting contributes to lower social competence and academic
achievement.
Not only is there evidence from some studies that authoritarian parenting does not
necessarily contribute to lower academic outcomes, some researchers have proposed that
authoritative parenting does not always promote higher academic achievement,
particularly among Asian American and African American samples. For example,
researchers have found that the relationship between authoritative parenting and
academic achievement may be significantly lower (although positive) among African
Americans in comparison to Asian, European or Hispanic American adolescents
(Steinberg, Lamborn, Dornbusch & Darling, 1992).
In their examination of the cross-cultural generalizability of the relationship
between parenting style and academic achievement among a sample of Chinese,
European American and Australian adolescents, Leung, Lau and Lam (1998) found that
although academic achievement was negatively related to academic authoritarianism in
all three cultural groups, academic achievement was positively related to general
authoritarianism among Chinese adolescents. Study conclusions indicated that although
Chinese parents tend to be more authoritarian, their children still perform well in school
and that Chinese adolescents are not at all in a disadvantaged position.

Parenting Style, Socioeconomic Status, Peer Support and Neighborhood Risk

Ecological variables like environmental factors, racial status, socioeconomic


status and cultural context may determine whether or not parenting style has an influence
on achievement outcomes for adolescents. In fact, if these ecological variables were
controlled for, parenting style may account for little or no variance (Pittman & Chase-
Lansdale, 2001).

19
For example, environmental factors such as violent or stressful neighborhoods
may necessitate parents to modify their parenting behavior to a more demanding punitive
style, whereas safer communities may not require such an adjustment in child-rearing
practices. Thus, environmental factors may mediate the influence of parenting style on
achievement outcomes even when positive parenting practices have been used (Pittman
& Chase-Lansdale, 2001).
Additionally, Gonzales, Cauce, Friedman, and Mason (1996) examined the
influence of family status variables, parenting variables, peer support and neighborhood
risk on the school performance of 120 African American junior high students. The
researchers attempted to test the contention that peer and neighborhood influences are
more powerful than family influences (e.g., parenting style) and examine the influence of
neighborhood risk as a moderator of the effects of parenting and peer support on
academic achievement. Standardized questionnaires, scales and other self-report
instruments were used to assess the influence of peer support and neighborhood risk on
academic achievement as compared to family variables, and investigate neighborhood
risk as a moderator variable in examining the influence of peer support and parenting
variables on academic achievement.
Extensive interviews were also conducted to supplement quantitative measures
and data collection occurred at two different time intervals (Time 1 and Time 2).
Regression results indicated that family status or parenting variables did not have a
significant influence on Time 2 GPA (measuring academic achievement), but peer
support and neighborhood risk uniquely explained a significant proportion of the variance
in Time 2 GPA. Also, results indicated that peer support was positively related to GPA
and that neighborhood risk was negatively related to GPA.
Study conclusions underscore the impact of the extrafamilial influences of peer
support and neighborhood risk on the academic achievement of African American
adolescents and the importance of considering ecological models and multiple contexts in
the examination of school performance among African American adolescents.
Furthermore, study conclusions emphasized that peer and neighborhood contexts may be
more powerful than that of family as determinant of school performance for African
American adolescents, and that the interactions of neighborhood risk with maternal
control and peer support significantly predicts academic achievement.
Pittman and Chase-Lansdale (2001) explored the association between multiple
adolescent outcomes and parenting in a sample of African American girls from high-
poverty neighborhoods, significant covariates were discovered relevant to the context of
parenting in extreme economic hardship such as mothers depression and financial strain,
mothers marital status, household income, welfare participation and teenage pregnancy.
Results from the study indicated that associations between parenting style and adolescent
outcomes were significant after controlling for these covariates which had not been
incorporated in previous studies. The researchers concluded that authoritative parenting
may be less effective in influencing academic achievement among African American
adolescents as compared with European American youth due to mediating contextual
variables relevant to family status (e.g., socioeconomic status, marital status) and
environment (e.g., poverty-stricken or high-risk neighborhoods).

20
Parenting Style and Parental Involvement

Lastly, some studies have investigated how parental involvement can moderate
the influence of parenting style on academic achievement. For example, Paulson (1994)
explored the relative influences of parenting style and parental involvement on early
adolescents school achievement among 247 adolescents. Standardized questionnaires,
scales and self-report measures were used to examine the relationship between parenting
characteristics and achievement.
Results indicated that all parenting characteristics were positively related to
achievement, and boys and girls reports of both fathers and mothers parenting
significantly predicted their achievement outcomes. However, based on further analysis,
maternal values toward achievement and maternal involvement in school functions
(subscales of parental involvement) predicted unique proportions of variance in
achievement outcome above and beyond that predicted by the other parenting
characteristics.
In regard to parenting style, results revealed that maternal values toward
achievement, maternal interest in homework, and maternal involvement in school
functions predicted unique proportions of variance in achievement outcome above and
beyond that predicted by authoritative parenting. Additionally, paternal values toward
achievement and involvement in school functions were significantly related to
achievement outcome when controlling for other parenting characteristics. Finally, for
girls reports of paternal parenting, paternal values toward achievement and involvement
in school functions predicted a unique proportion of the variance in achievement outcome
above and beyond the other parenting characteristics.
Conclusions indicated that adolescents reports of maternal and paternal
authoritative parenting and parental involvement in achievement predicted significant
proportions of variance in the achievement outcome. Conclusions also revealed that high
levels of both maternal and paternal involvement were significantly related to
achievement outcomes, and that adolescents who perceived their parents as having higher
achievement values, as being interested in school work, and as being more involved in
school functions had higher grades in school than did adolescents who did not perceive
these characteristics in their parents. In summary, parental involvement may mediate the
influence of parenting style by having a greater impact on academic achievement than
authoritative parenting and ameliorating the supposedly negative outcomes of
authoritarian parenting.
Steinberg, Lamborn, Dornbusch and Darling (1992) examined the impact of
authoritative parenting, parental involvement in schooling, and parental encouragement
to succeed on adolescent school achievement in an ethnically and socioeconomically
heterogeneous sample of 6,400 American 14-18 year olds. Several standardized
instruments were used to measure authoritative parenting, parental involvement in
education, parental encouragement and academic outcomes. Results indicated that
parental authoritativeness was significantly correlated with parental school involvement
and parental academic encouragement, and that the impact of authoritative parenting on
adolescent school success was attributable to the greater likelihood of authoritative
parents to be involved in their youngsters schooling. Also, results indicated that relations
between authoritative parenting and school performance and engagement no longer

21
remained statistically significant once parental encouragement and school involvement
were taken into account. Finally, although parental involvement was associated with
higher school performance among all groups, the magnitude of the effect was
significantly smaller in nonauthoritative homes.
Conclusions indicated that parental involvement accounts for better school
performance and stronger school engagement of adolescents from homes characterized as
authoritative, and that parental encouragement of academic success does not appear to
play a direct role in facilitating adolescent performance or engagement once parental
involvement is taken into account. Furthermore, conclusions support the assumption that
parental involvement in school actually leads to improvements in school performance,
and that school success follows from, and does not accompany or precede, parental
involvement. Among African Americans, neither parental involvement nor parental
encouragement were significant in predicting school performance or school engagement,
which is parallel to earlier findings that parental authoritativeness was not a good
predictor of academic achievement in African American homes. Finally, such
conclusions further document that parenting practices (particularly school-specific ones)
may have less of an influence on student achievement among African Americans.
In addition to examining the relationship between parenting style and academic
achievement, researchers have also investigated parental influence on achievement
outcomes through a number of mediating variables such as intrinsic/extrinsic motivation,
goal orientation and academic self-efficacy (Ginsburg & Bronstein, 1993; Grolnick &
Ryan, 1989; Grolnick et al., 1991). Thus, researchers have proposed a need to uncover
how parenting style relates to these mediating variables (Epstein, 1989; Lamborn et al.,
1992). The effects of the variables of motivation, goal orientation and academic self-
efficacy on achievement outcomes will be examined along with the interrelationships
between these variables and parenting styles.

Motivation

Intrinsic motivation has been defined as participation in an activity or completion


of a task out of curiosity or a desire to learn, engaging in the activity or completing a task
for the sake of doing it or with a willingness to contribute (Deci, 1975; Gottfried, 1983;
Bates, 1979; Deci, Vallerand, Pelletier, & Ryan, 1991; Mills, 1991). Conversely,
extrinsic motivation is defined as participation in an activity or completion of a task due
to external incentives, which may include attaining a reward or avoiding punishment
(Adelman & Taylor, 1990; Ball, 1984; Beck, 1978; Deci, 1975; Wiersma, 1992). Several
studies have examined the differential effects of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation on
achievement outcomes.
Stimulating intrinsic motivation in adolescent students can promote higher
achievement outcomes and help them obtain success (Adelman, 1978; Gottfried, 1983,
1985). Additionally, intrinsic motivation has been strongly correlated with academic
achievement among students with or without learning disabilities (Gottfried, 1985;
Adelman, 1978; Adelman & Taylor, 1983). Internal factors such as curiosity, interest,
self-determination, opportunity of choice, personal responsibility, challenge, persistence
and effort provide explanations for the relationship between intrinsic motivation and
academic achievement. For example, de Charms (1984) studied mainly African American

22
students from low-SES backgrounds, and found that teachers were encouraged to give
students more responsibility for their school program by allowing them to set their own
goals, develop plans for reaching their own goals, select what activities to engage in, and
monitor their own progress. Students were held personally accountable for reaching their
own goals. Compared to the control group, students who were placed in the intrinsic/self-
determination group obtained higher achievement gains.
However, in the case of extrinsic motivation, adolescents may participate in
activities or a task solely due to external incentives or to avoid punishment which leads to
a lack of engagement in activities that involve the development of learning and creativity.
Motivating adolescents through external incentives may indeed interfere with their
intrinsic motivation, and therefore, lead to lower achievement outcomes (Gottfried,
Fleming, & Gottfried, 1994). In numerous studies, researchers have found that tangible
rewards and other extrinsic motivators can have inhibit an adolescents intrinsic
motivation or limit the factors that influences their intrinsic motivation (Beck, 1978;
Deci, 1975; Deci & Ryan, 1985; Greene & Lepper, 1974).
Deci and Ryan (1985) found that external rewards or punishments used to control
behavior have been perceived as stressful to the learner. Consequently, self-determination
as an influence on intrinsic motivation may be limited if adolescents perceive external
incentives as controls upon their task performance (Adelman & Taylor, 1990;
Harackiewicz, 1979). Also, Karniol and Ross (1977) found that students who were
offered rewards not relevant to their performance lost interest in the task when they had
been successful in a previous attempt. Thus, interest as an influence on intrinsic
motivation is inhibited when rewards contingent upon the adolescents performance are
not related to the task at hand.
In addition, Kruglanski et al. (1971) examined the interaction between extrinsic
motivation and intrinsic motivation on fourty-eight boys between the ages of fourteen and
fifteen years. The researchers hypothesized that a reward related to the task would
enhance intrinsic motivation, whereas a reward not associated with the task would
decrease the desire to engage in the task. The results of their experiment supported their
hypothesis, and they also found that interest in an activity that was stimulating and
engaging for the subjects decreased when rewards were made contingent upon
participation. Thus, Kruglanski et al. concluded that reinforcing solely participation in an
activity may be more detrimental to intrinsic motivation than previously believed, and
that linking a reward too closely and too often to a task may indeed inhibit the long-term
maintenance of behavior.
Throughout the literature, there are several other studies which present
contradictory results on the interaction of extrinsic motivators with intrinsic motivation.
For this reason, the effects of noncontingent rewards upon intrinsic motivation are
inconclusive (Karniol & Ross, 1977). For example, researchers have found positive
feedback to enhance intrinsic motivation independently of any other reward (Cameron &
Pierce, 1994; Harackiewicz, 1979) and in other cases, positive feedback had no effect on
the subsequent intrinsic motivation of the subject (Thelen, Dollinger, & Kirkland, 1979).
Other researchers have found that if a reward is unexpected, it has no effect on the
intrinsic motivation of the learner (Greene & Lepper, 1974) and that rewards in the form
of verbal praise were found to enhance the intrinsic motivation of boys, but inhibit the
intrinsic motivation of girls (Boggiano & Katz, 1991; Zinser, Young, & King, 1982).

23
Lastly, Cameron and Pierce (1994) conducted a meta-analysis of 101 experimental
studies in order to evaluate the effects of rewards and reinforcement on intrinsic
motivation of a mixed population of adults and children from a variety of settings. The
researchers concluded that overall, rewards and reinforcement do not enhance intrinsic
motivation, but verbal praise can increase intrinsic motivation. Due to several
discrepancies in the literature, there still exists a large degree of uncertainty concerning
the effect of extrinsic motivators on intrinsic motivation.

Motivation and Parenting Style

The importance of socializing agents in the development of an adolescents


motivation has been given much attention in the research literature. For example,
Ginsburg and Bronstein (1993) found that children from authoritarian homes tend to
exhibit more anxious and withdrawn behavior, have a high chance of relying on authority
figures to make decisions, ate less likely than those raised in authoritative homes, and
were less likely to engage in exploratory and challenge seeking behavior. Based on this
finding, they linked authoritarian parenting with extrinsic motivation. They also found
that children from authoritative homes were more willing to engage in exploratory
behavior, were more self-reliant, independent and curious. Thus, the researchers linked
authoritative parenting with intrinsic motivation. Also, they found that children from
permissive homes lacked self-reliance, had little tolerance for frustration and were less
likely to persist on learning tasks. As a result of these findings, the researchers linked
permissive parenting with extrinsic motivation (Ginsburg & Bronstein, 1993).
However, research that has examined the relationship between parenting
behaviors (e.g., parenting style) and an adolescents effort and school performance has
been unsuccessful in providing additional explanations on the influence of intrinsic or
extrinsic motivation on academic achievement (Ginsburg & Bronstein, 1993). Such a
discrepancy is underscored in the research literature.
For example, in surveying 7, 836 high school students, Dornbusch, Elworth and
Ritter (1988) found that adolescents who reported that their parents responded to their
grades with extrinsic rewards or punishments, or remained uninvolved, expended less
effort in school and had lower grade point averages. Conversely, parental encouragement
as a response to grades was positively correlated with effort and academic performance.
Although this study provided additional information on the association between parenting
behavior and academic performance, it did not directly assess the relationship between
parental behavior and intrinsic/extrinsic motivation.
Based on contradictory findings in the literature, it is difficult to ascertain the
strength of intrinsic motivation as a predictor of academic achievement, due to significant
gaps in the research concerning the interaction between intrinsic motivation and extrinsic
motivation. In many cases, intrinsic motivation seems to promote higher achievement
outcomes, independent of the influence of extrinsic motivators. However, other studies
indicate that extrinsic motivators may in fact enhance intrinsic motivation or inhibit
intrinsic motivation, resulting in differential achievement outcomes.
Additionally, when examining the relationship between parenting style and
motivation as an explanation for achievement outcomes, the literature is unclear in regard
to the relationship of parenting behavior with intrinsic or extrinsic motivation in

24
examining achievement outcomes. Such discrepancies should be addressed in
investigating the strength of motivation as a predictor of academic achievement.

Goal Orientation

Goal orientation emphasizes the purpose for which an individual participates in an


activity or engages in a task. According to Ames (1992) goal orientations are generally
regarded as integrated patterns of motivational beliefs that represent different ways of
approaching, engaging in, and responding to achievement-related activities. Dweck &
Leggett (1988) found that adolescents respond to difficult and challenging situations with
one of three different goal orientations: (a) mastery orientation, (b) helpless orientation,
or (c) performance orientation.
Adolescents possessing a mastery orientation focus on the task rather than their
ability, have a positive effect as they engage in the activity, and produce solution-oriented
strategies which lead to improvement of their ability. Adolescents possessing a helpless
orientation focus on their personal inadequacies, attribute their failure of performance to
their lack of ability, and have a negative affect as they engage in an activity. Adolescents
possessing a performance orientation focus on their ability rather than the task, are overly
anxious about proving their ability or outperforming others, and concerned about
outcomes rather than improving their ability through the learning process (Dweck &
Leggett, 1988).
In utilizing mastery orientation students focus on trying to learn and understand
the material and endeavor to improve their performance relative to past attempts. This
type of goal orientation helps them to maintain their competence in the face of failure, to
eliminate negative affect such as anxiety, to lessen the probability of distracting thoughts,
and to free up cognitive capacity, which in turn leads to more cognitive engagement and
higher achievement outcomes. In contrast, students who utilize a performance orientation
focus on trying to outperform others and strive to prove their ability. This type of goal
orientation will result in more negative affect or anxiety, and produce distracting,
irrelevant thoughts, which in turn leads to diminished cognitive capacity, reduction in
task engagement and lower achievement outcomes (Dweck & Leggett, 1988).
Several studies in the literature have indicated that different goal orientations can
lead to a wide range of educationally related outcomes (Albaili, 2003). In general,
mastery orientation has been linked with a number of positive outcomes such as adaptive
self-seeking behavior (Newman, 1998), academic self-efficacy (Roeser, Midgley, &
Urdan, 1996), attribution of success to effort (Ames & Archer, 1988), preference for
challenging tasks (Ames & Archer, 1988; Turner, Thorpe, & Meyer, 1998), persistence in
the face of difficulty (Elliot & Dweck, 1988), deep processing strategies (Albaili, 1998;
Ames & Archer, 1988), intrinsic interest in learning (Meece, Blumenfeld, & Hoyle,
1988) and superior academic achievement (Albaili, 1998; Tanaka & Ysmauchi, 2001).
Conversely, performance orientation has been traditionally linked with a number
of negative outcomes such as a reluctance to seek academic assistance (Newman, 1998;
Ryan & Pintrich, 1997), cheating ( Anderman, Griesinger, & Westerfield, 1988),
academic self-handicapping (Anderman et al., 1998; Urban, Midgley, & Anderman,
1998), withdrawal from effort in the face of failure (Dweck & Leggett, 1998), negative

25
affect following failure (Turner et al., 1998) and shallow processing strategies (Albaili,
1998; Greene & Miller, 1996).
Some studies have indicated that goal orientations are presumed to differ as a
function of situational demands (Maehr, 1984). There is considerable evidence in the
research literature that situational demands can affect the salience of specific goals,
which results in differential patterns of cognition, affect and performance (Ames, 1984b;
Ames, Ames, & Felker, 1977; Covington, 1984; Covington & Omelich, 1984). For
example, when social comparison stands out as a goal, students focus more on their
ability (or use a performance orientation) and such self-perceptions can mediate
performance and affective reactions to success or failure. Conversely, when absolute
demands, self-improvement or participation become salient goals, students focus more on
their effort or task strategies or use a mastery orientation (Ames & Archer, 1988).
The general theoretical assumption in the literature has been that mastery
orientation fosters a host of adaptive, motivational, cognitive and achievement outcomes,
whereas performance orientation fosters less adaptive and even maladaptive outcomes
(Ames, 1992). Although a large number of studies on goals and achievement processes
have provided empirical support for this traditional assumption, some research has
indicated a positive relationship between performance orientation and adaptive learning
strategies, persistence and academic performance (Bouffard, Boisvert, Vezeau &
Larouche, 1995; Harackiewiez, Barron, Carter, Lehto, & Elliot, 1997; Meece et al., 1988;
Miller, Greene, Montalvo, Bhuvaneswari, & Nichols, 1996). Moreover, there is growing
evidence in the research literature that the pursuit of both performance and mastery goals
can be positively related to higher achievement outcomes (Giota, 2002).

Goal Orientation and Motivation

Traditionally, research studies have indicated that mastery orientation is


associated with intrinsic motivation, and performance orientation is usually related to
extrinsic motivation. In fact, a summary analyses of several studies has provided
empirical support for the hypothesis that performance orientation has an undermining
effect on intrinsic motivation (Rawsthorne & Elliot, 1999). In addition, most theorists
have espoused the main effect hypothesis that adolescents possessing a mastery
orientation demonstrate higher levels of intrinsic motivation, whereas adolescents
possessing a performance orientation exhibit lower levels of intrinsic motivation (Deci &
Ryan, 1990; Nicholls, 1989).
Although a number of studies have found empirical support for the undermining
effect of performance orientation on intrinsic motivation (Butler, 1987, 1988;
Harackiewicz, Abrahams, & Wageman, 1987; Ryan, 1982; Ryan, Koestner, & Deci,
1991), still others have failed to find any supporting evidence for this hypothesis (Butler,
1992; Harackiewicz & Elliot, 1993; Koestner, Zuckerman, Koestner, 1989; Sansone,
1986). Therefore, a great degree of uncertainty still exists concerning the relationships
between performance and mastery orientation and intrinsic motivation.
In response to such discrepancies in the literature some theorists have made a
distinction between approach and avoidance performance orientations (Elliot &
Harackiewicz, 1996; Middleton & Midgley, 1997). An approach performance orientation
reflects a students attempt to outperform others, whereas an avoidance performance

26
orientation reflects a students attempt to avoid appearing incompetent in comparison to
others. Some researchers have found that performance avoidance orientation is related to
maladaptive patterns of learning for middle school and college students (Elliot &
Harackiewicz, 1996; Middleton & Midgley, 1997; Skaalvik, 1997). Also, Elliot (1997)
in distinguishing performance avoidance orientation from performance approach
orientation, has maintained that performance avoidance orientation is the major
impediment to intrinsic motivation.
Harackiewicz et al. (1998) found that the performance approach orientation was
positively related to actual performance at least in terms of final course grades for college
students. Also, some studies conducted with secondary and college students suggested
that there is not necessarily a decrement in cognitive engagement and self-regulation as a
function of adopting a performance orientation (Pintrich, 2000b, 2000c). Finally, Pintrich
(2000b) found that students high in performance approach orientation and high in
mastery orientation were not more anxious, did not experience more negative affect, and
were equally motivated as those low in performance approach orientation and high in
mastery orientation.
Moderator analyses were conducted by Rawsthorne and Elliot (1999) in an
attempt to explain the significant variation in the magnitude and direction of the effect of
performance orientation on intrinsic motivation across studies. They found that the
undermining effect of performance orientation on intrinsic motivation was contingent on
whether participants received confirming or nonconfirming competence feedback, and on
whether the experimental procedures induced a performance approach or performance
avoidance orientation.
In the majority of goal orientation/motivation research, experimental designs have
been employed using a free-choice paradigm in measuring intrinsic motivation (Deci,
1971). Ryan et al. (1991) examined the undermining effects of performance orientation
on intrinsic motivation (e.g., operationalized as free-choice persistence). They found that
an undermining effect of performance orientation is to be expected only under conditions
in which participants receive competence-confirming feedback. Thus, in the absence of
such feedback, individuals pursuing a performance orientation may persist at the activity
to demonstrate their competence, producing null findings or enhancement effects. Ryan
et al. concluded that performance orientations are predicted to have a larger undermining
effect on free-choice persistence (intrinsic motivation) in cases where participants are
provided with positive, competence-confirming feedback than for cases in which
negative or no performance feedback is administered.

Goal Orientation, Motivation and Parenting Style

Traditionally, the parenting, motivation and goal theory literature has indicated
that authoritative parenting is associated with mastery goal orientation and intrinsic
motivation, whereas authoritative and permissive parenting styles are associated with
performance goal orientation and extrinsic motivation. For example, several researchers
have found parental authoritarianism to be correlated with students who have less
capacity to experience pleasure in work and are more dependent on others (Steinberg,
Elmen, & Mounts, 1989; Steinberg, Lamborn, Darling, Mounts, & Dornbusch, 1994;
Lamborn, Mounts, Steinberg, & Dornbusch, 1991). Such students are extrinsically

27
motivated and utilize a performance orientation when engaging in tasks or activities. Still
other researchers found authoritarian parenting to be associated with dependence on
authority figures and a tendency to withdraw from challenging academic situations
(Bamrind, 1967, Baumrind & Black, 1967, Macoby & Martin, 1983), behaviors that are
reflective of extrinsic motivation and a performance goal orientation.
In regard a parental permissiveness, researchers have found this parenting style to
be related to extrinsic motivation (Ginsburg & Bronstein, 1993) and behaviors indicative
of a performance goal orientation such as poor work orientation and poor self-reliance
(Lamborn, Mounts, Steinberg, & Dornbusch, 1991), low tolerance for frustration and low
persistence in the face of difficulty (Baumrind, 1967, 1971; Baumrind & Black, 1967;
Macoby & Martin, 1983).
Conversely, several researchers have found authoritative parenting to be related to
behaviors exhibiting intrinsic motivation and a mastery goal orientation. For example,
students with authoritative parents were more likely to demonstrate a healthy work
orientation, self-reliance and an ability to experience pleasure in work ( Steinberg,
Elmen, & Mounts, 1989; Steinberg, Lamborn, Darling, Mounts, & Dornbusch, 1994;
Lamborn, Mounts, Steinberg, & Dornbusch, 1991) in addition to an intrinsic motivational
style (Ginsburg & Bronstein, 1993) and challenge-seeking behavior (Baumrind, 1967).
In examining the relationship between goal orientation, motivation and parenting
style, several discrepancies and relevant gaps have been identified in the research
literature. In a study of 311 undergraduate students enrolled in education or psychology
courses in a large southeastern university, Gonzalez, Greenwood, and Wen Hsu (2001)
found authoritarianism to be related to performance goal orientation and extrinsic
motivation for the entire sample. However, significant discrepancies in regard to the
parental authoritarianism, gender and race were realized in the examination of this
relationship. For example, concerning paternal authoritarianism, the researchers found
that the risk of students developing a performance goal orientation was greater with a
father who exhibited an authoritarian parenting style. Also, the researchers discovered
that the relationship between authoritarianism and performance goal orientation is
stronger for girls than for boys. Lastly, in examining the African American subsample
(which was largely female) it was found that maternal authoritarianism was strongly
related to mastery goal orientation.
In regard to authoritativeness, Gonzalez, Greenwood and Wen Hsu (2001) found
that maternal authoritativeness was significantly related to mastery goal orientation for
the entire sample. However, discrepancies existed in terms of parental authoritativeness,
gender and race. For example, they discovered that the maternal authoritativeness had a
stronger impact on girls than boys. Also, in examining the African American subsample,
they found that paternal authoritativeness was more predictive of a performance goal
orientation.
In examining the relationship between goal orientation and parenting style,
Gonzalez, Holbein and Quilter (2002) surveyed 196 students enrolled in two Florida high
schools. In concurrence with the achievement goal theory and parenting style literature,
they found maternal authoritativeness to be associated with mastery goal orientation, and
maternal authoritarianism and permissiveness to be related to performance goal
orientation. Based on the findings, there appeared to be no difference in the effect of
maternal authoritarianism between African American and Caucasian students; in fact

28
authoritarian parenting was found to be related to the performance goal orientation
among all students (Gonzalez, Holbein & Quilter, 2002). This finding was contradictory
to the results of the previous study by Gonzalez, Greenwood and WenHsu (2001).
Also, maternal authoritativeness was not significantly related to African
Americans mastery orientation (Gonzalez, Holbein & Quilter, 2002). This finding
supported the traditional assumption in the literature that authoritative parenting does not
provide the same benefits for African American students as does for Caucasian students
(Dornbusch et al., 1987; Steinberg et al., 1994).
Such discrepancies in the differential effects of parenting style upon the
constructs of goal orientation and motivation present a need for further investigation. In
understanding the predictability of motivation and goal orientation for achievement
outcomes, the contextual influence of the parenting environment should be considered.
The meaning of parenting style is often moderated by the cultural, racial and
socioeconomic context, and therefore may present differential effects on the motivation,
goal orientation and achievement of students. Several researchers have reported that
authoritative parenting may not benefit African Americans in the same way as Caucasian
students (Dornbusch et al., 1987; Steinberg et al., 1994). Moreover, in parenting style
literature, authoritativeness has traditionally been associated with more positive
outcomes; however, several contradictions exist in the research indicating the positive
influence of authoritarian parenting (Gonzalez, Greenwood, & WenHsu, 2001;
Baumrind, 1972).

Self-Efficacy

Self-efficacy can be regarded as the belief that one can master a situation and
produce favorable outcomes (Bandura, 1997). Bandura believed that self-efficacy
contributes to the academic achievement of students. Bandura proposed that individuals
make a cognitive judgment about their mastery of present situations in view of their past
experiences, and proceed to carry out the necessary behaviors to accomplish the task at
hand.
Schunk (1991) also proposed that self-efficacy is critical to the academic
achievement of adolescents. He hypothesized that self-efficacy influences a students
choice of activities. Consequently, students with a high level of self-efficacy will select
more challenging learning tasks, therefore expending more persistence and effort to
obtain higher achievement outcomes, whereas students with low level of self-efficacy
will avoid difficult and challenging tasks that require more effort and persistence, and
thus, obtain lower achievement outcomes.
Students with higher self-efficacy expend greater effort, exhibit more persistence
and demonstrate greater resilience in the face of adverse situations. As a result of these
influences, self-efficacy beliefs are strong determinants of the level of accomplishment
(Bandura, 1997; Pajares, 1996), and therefore contribute tremendously to intellectual
development which leads to academic success (Bandura, 1995).
In addition, the research literature includes several studies which emphasize the
effect of self-efficacy on numerous positive outcomes as well as academic achievement.
For example, not only has self-efficacy been found to positively relate to higher levels of
achievement, but also it has a strong association with a variety of adaptive academic

29
outcomes such as higher levels of effort and increased persistence on difficult tasks. This
finding has been confirmed across a number of experimental and correlational studies
involving students of different ages (Bandura, 1997; Pintrich & Schunk, 2002). Also, in a
correlational study conducted by Linnenbrink and Pintrich (2002), it was found that self-
efficacy is positively related to student cognitive engagement and their use of self-
regulatory strategies as well as general achievement as indexed by grades (Pintrich,
2000b; Pintrich & De Groot, 1990; Wolters, Yu, & Pintrich, 1996). Lastly, further
evidence exists in the research literature that confirms Schunks hypothesis that students
who have positive self-efficacy beliefs are more likely to choose to continue to take more
difficult courses over the course of schooling (Eccles et al., 1998).
Although several studies confirm the positive effect of self-efficacy on academic
achievement, there also seems to be a number of other mediating influences or related
variables that provide further explanation of this relationship. In view of possible
mediating influences, there exist contradictions in the literature regarding the exact nature
of the relationship of self-efficacy with other related variables (e.g., goal orientation,
motivation) in explaining positive academic outcomes, as well as its precise strength in
predicting academic achievement, irrespective of these variables. Such discrepancies in
the research literature should be considered in examining the effect of self-efficacy on
academic achievement.

Self-Efficacy, Goal Orientation and Motivation

Self-efficacy has been found to relate to goal orientation and motivation in


explaining achievement outcomes. In regard to motivation, path analysis of causality
conducted by Zimmerman, Bandura and Martinez-Pons (1992) revealed that perceived
self-efficacy influences students learning through cognitive as well as motivational
mechanisms. In addition, numerous experimental studies have revealed that self-efficacy
beliefs are correlated with academic performances such as semester and final year grades,
in-class assignments, homework, exams, essays and reports. These findings indicate that
students perceptions of their ability to master academic tasks may be more of an accurate
predictor of their motivation and academic achievement ( Pajares, 1996).
Dweck (1986) proposed that students goal orientation interacts with their self-
efficacy beliefs and influence the amount of effort they expend on school tasks.
Conversely, other studies have indicated the strong predictability of self-efficacy on
effort expenditure regardless of goal orientation. For example, Elliot and Dweck (1988)
found that students with a high level of self-efficacy, irrespective of goal orientation,
expend more effort as tasks become increasing difficult.
Still other studies (Elliot & Dweck, 1988) have examined the influence of low
self-efficacy on patterns of persistence, depending upon the goal orientation of the
student. In studying subjects with low efficacy beliefs, Elliot et al. found that students
with a performance goal orientation are more likely to interpret failure as an indication of
low ability, and therefore withdraw effort. They found that subjects with a mastery goal
orientation, along with a low level of self-efficacy, see failure as a cue to change their
learning strategy for completing their tasks and increasing their efforts. The increased
effort usually contributes to improved performance, and higher achievement outcomes
(Elliot & Dweck, 1988).

30
Fleming (1995) studied undergraduate calculus students from a midwestern
university and examined the interactions between self-efficacy, goal orientation and
effort expenditure. When mastery goal orientation and performance goal orientation
scores were compared, the interaction between self-efficacy and goal orientation
significantly predicted student effort at midterm. Moreover, the interaction between self-
efficacy and mastery goal orientation significantly predicted student effort during the
final. Students with higher levels of self-efficacy who reported having a mastery goal
orientation expended more effort. Students were classified as having either a mastery
goal orientation or a performance goal orientation, and when goal orientation scores were
dichotomized, only self-efficacy scores were significant predictors of effort (Fleming,
1995).
Thus, the results of studies examining the interaction of self-efficacy, goal
orientation and motivation are contradictory and inconclusive. Therefore, the precise
nature of the relationship of self-efficacy with these variables should be examined in
considering variances in academic achievement. Also a discrepancy exists in terms of
conceptualizing self-efficacy in regard to its impact on academic achievement. The
positive link between self-efficacy and academic achievement assumes that students
should strive to maintain the highest level of self-efficacy possible. However, self-
efficacy may need to be conceptualized as ability beliefs that are relatively accurate or
reflective of actual accomplishments rather than overestimated perceptions of mastery
(Bandura, 1997).

Summary

Although parenting style has been considered as a predictor of academic


achievement in several studies, there still exists evidence in the research literature that
confirms the influence of other mediating variables upon this relationship (Ginsburg &
Bronstein, 1993; Grolnick & Ryan, 1989; Grolnick et al., 1991; Fang et al., 2003).
Contradictory findings on the strength of parenting style as a predictor of academic
achievement necessitates further study of other individual factors (e.g., motivation, goal
orientation, academic self-efficacy) as well as contextual factors (e.g., parental
involvement, race/ethnicity, family status, peer support) that may provide better
explanations of the variances in achievement outcomes. Also, there exists a lack of
attention given to the study of minority youth (especially black males) in regard to the
relationships between the variables of interest. Therefore, this study will attempt to
address significant gaps in the literature regarding the relationships between parenting
styles and academic achievement, the mediating influences of other variables (e.g.,
motivation, goal orientation, self-efficacy) upon these relationships, and the
generalizability of authoritative parenting as predictor of higher achievement outcomes
across different racial and cultural groups.

31
CHAPTER 3: METHODS

Relations between parenting style and academic achievement were examined for a
sample of high school students. In addition, the mediating effects of motivation, goal
orientation and academic self-efficacy were also examined. Standardized questionnaires
were used to measure the variables of interest including the Parenting Style and Parental
Involvement Questionnaire (PSPI), the Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic Motivation Orientation
Scale, and the Patterns of Adaptive Learning Survey (PALS). Correlations, hierarchal
multiple regression and analysis of variance (ANOVA) were the analyses used.
Delimitations included the use of a purposive sampling design to intentionally select
participants from high schools in an eight-county area of rural, south central Georgia.
Additional information regarding the participants, the measures, procedures and data
analysis were provided in the following sections.

Participants

One hundred and forty-eight high school students from counties in rural, south
central Georgia were used as a non-randomized cluster sample for this study. Gender
composition of the sample consisted of 39% male and 61% female. Racial composition of
the sample consisted of 53% White, 37% African-American, 5% Hispanic, 1% Asian,
.7% Pacific Islander and 3% Biracial. In terms of grade level, 68% were 11th grade
students, 13% were 12th grade students, and 12% were 10th grade students. A power
analysis was conducted to determine the appropriate sample size for statistical analysis.
Demographic information from a representative sample of high schools in south
Georgia were provided in comparison to the actual study sample characteristics. The
demographics of sex, race and grade for both samples were summarized in Table 1.

Table 1. Demographic Characteristics of the Study Sample and South Georgia

Study Sample South Georgia


Characteristic n % n %
________________________________________________________________________

Sex
Male 58 39.2 727 48
Female 90 60.8 773 51
Race
Asian 2 1.4 16 .01
African-American 54 36.5 555 37
White 78 52.7 829 55
Pacific Islander 1 .7
Hispanic 8 5.4 90 .05
Biracial 5 3.4 8 .005
Grade
10th Grade 18 12.2 565 38
11th Grade 100 67.6 539 36

32
Table 1. Continued

Study Sample South Georgia


Characteristic n % n %
________________________________________________________________________

12th Grade 19 12.8 397 26


Not Specified 11 7.5
School
Tift County 97 65.5
Cook County 36 24.3
Turner County 2 1.4
Berrien County 1 .7
Worth County 5 3.4
Atkinson County 2 1.4
Ben Hill County 4 2.7
Colquitt County 1 .7
Age
14 2 1.4
15 5 3.4
16 53 35.8
17 65 43.9
18 21 14.2
Not Specified 2 1.4
Academic Track
College Prep 82 55.4
College Prep AP 37 25.0
Tech Prep 24 16.2
General/Regular 2 1.4
Not Specified 3 2.0
Future Plan
Work Full-time 1 .7
College Full-time 61 41.2
Work and College 76 51.4
Military 7 4.7
Not Specified 3 2.0
Family Composition
Both Biological 62 41.9
Both Biological/Stepparent 2 1.4
Biological/Stepparent 32 21.6
Grandparent 7 4.7
Single Parent Only 29 19.6
Single Parent/Other 3 2.0
Both Biological/Other 4 2.7
Biological/Stepparent/Other 2 1.4
Single Parent/Grandparent/Other 2 1.4

33
Table 1. Continued

Study Sample South Georgia


Characteristic n % n %
________________________________________________________________________

Other 5 3.4
Parental Influence
Both Biological 39 26.4
Both Biological/Stepparent 2 1.4
Biological/Stepparent 6 4.1
Both Biological/Grandparent 10 6.8
Grandparent 12 8.1
Single Parent Only 45 30.4
Single Parent/Grandparent 9 6.1
Single Parent/Other 2 4.1
Both Biological/Other 6 4.1
Single Parent/Grandparent/Other 6 4.1
Other 10 6.8
Not Specified 1 .7

Measures

Standardized measures were used to examine the variables of interest, parenting


style and academic achievement. The mediating variables of motivation, goal orientation
and self-efficacy were measured by standardized instruments. Information on the variable
of interest measured, reliability and validity estimates, description of scales and
subscales, and the procedures for the administration, scoring and interpretation of
standardized scales are provided below (see Appendix D).
Parenting style. The Parenting Style and Parental Involvement Questionnaire (see
Appendix D) was used to measure students perceptions of parenting style (Paulson,
1996). This measure of parenting style was selected because the questions were more
readable and the format was easier to follow by high school students. In using this
questionnaire, only two of Baumrinds parenting styles were measured: authoritativeness
by a responsiveness subscale and authoritarianism by a demandingness subscale.
In regard to measurement of parenting styles, the PSPI was composed of two 15-
item subscales on demandingness and responsiveness. Responses were generated from
students on a 5-point Likert-type format, with responses from adolescents ranging from
very unlike my mother/father to very like my mother/father.
Factor analyses were used to confirm the structure of the demandingness and
responsiveness scales. Subscale scores were calculated by summing or averaging
response values within the two subscales. Items stated in a negative direction were
reverse scored so that higher subscale scores will represent higher levels of the construct
being evaluated.
For reliability estimates, Cronbach alphas were calculated for adolescents ratings
of maternal or paternal demandingness and responsiveness. A Cronbach alpha of .78 was

34
reported for adolescents rating of maternal demandingness, while an alpha of .84 was
reported for adolescents rating of paternal demandingness. For adolescents rating of
responsiveness, a Cronbach alpha of .84 was reported for maternal responsiveness, while
an alpha of .87 was reported for paternal responsiveness. No estimates of validity were
provided for the instrument.
Responsiveness and demandingness means for each respondent were derived
from the sum totals of subscale items averaged by the number of responses to the
subscale items. Overall subscale means were based on the average of the mean responses
from each student in the sample. Higher mean scores on the responsiveness subscale
reflected an authoritative parenting style and higher mean scores on the demandingness
subscale reflected an authoritarian parenting style.
Motivation. Harters Intrinsic versus Extrinsic Orientation Scale (see Appendix
D) was used to measure student motivation (1981). The instrument consisted of 30 items
that relate to motivation for classroom learning in five dimensions (subscales) along an
intrinsic to extrinsic continuum. The first three subscales related to intrinsic or extrinsic
motivational orientation: (a) preference for challenge versus preference for easy work; (b)
curiosity versus working to please the teacher and/or to get good grades; (c) independent
mastery versus dependence on the teacher. The remaining two subscales related to a
cognitive-informational orientation: (d) independent judgement about what to do in the
classroom versus reliance on the teachers opinion; and (e) internal criteria for evaluation
of success or failure versus dependence on external criteria (i.e., grades or approval).
The items were scored on a four point scale with high scores reflecting intrinsic
motivation and low scores reflecting extrinsic motivation. Both the motivational
orientation and cognitive-informational scales yielded acceptable levels of reliability. A
coefficient alpha reliability of .91 was reported for the motivational orientation scale, and
a coefficient alpha reliability estimate of .84 was reported for the cognitive-informational
scale.
Factor analyses were relied upon heavily in examining the structure of the scale.
Validity from factor analyses dictated that the subscales which were constructed emerged
as meaningful factors in the data. Each subscale (e.g., challenge subscale, curiosity
subscale, mastery subscale, judgement subscale, criteria subscale) was examined to the
degree in which it tapped a separate dimension of classroom motivation that was
meaningful for the child. This procedure was necessary in order to justify the
interpretation of the subjects profile of scores across the five subscales. Emphasis was
placed on the internal consistency of the subscales as the primary index of reliability.
Means for each respondent were derived from the sum totals of subscale items
averaged by the number of responses to subscale items. Overall subscale means were
based on the average of the mean responses from each student in the sample. Mean
responses to challenge, curiosity, mastery, judgement and criteria subscales were based
on a 4-point scale (1 or 4 = Really True For Me, 2 or 3 = Sort Of True For Me, based on
whether an extrinsic or intrinsic pole was selected). Higher mean scores reflected
intrinsic motivation and lower mean scores reflected extrinsic motivation.
Goal Orientation. The Patterns of Adapted Learning Survey (see Appendix D)
was used to measure students goal orientations (Midgley et al., 1996). The PALS
Questionnaire was composed of three subscales: (1) mastery or task goal orientation; and
(2) performance or ego goal orientation, which was further conceptualized into

35
(a) performance or ego approach and (b) performance or ego avoidance goal orientations.
A five point Likert-type format was used with items on the student scales anchored at 1 =
Not at all true, 3 = Somewhat true, and 5 = Very true.
The task or mastery goal orientation scale was a unit weight mean of six items
that focused on efforts to improve skills and master new material. The performance or
ego approach goal orientation scale was a unit weight mean of five items assessing
students desires to outperform others. The performance or ego avoidance goal
orientation scale was a unit weight mean of five items concerned with students attempts
to hide their perceived inability. Median splits were created for each of the three
subscales, with students categorized as high or low on each goal orientation.
A confirmatory factor analysis was conducted on the achievement goal orientation
items to examine the factor structure of the three sets of items (task or mastery,
performance or ego approach, performance or ego avoidance). LISREL VIII confirmed
the expected model (Joreskog & Sorbom, 1993). Goodness of fit indices suggested that
the model fits the data well (GFI = .097, AGFI = 0.95). Specifically, task or mastery,
performance or ego approach, and performance or ego avoidance goal orientations all
loaded on different latent factors.
All three subscales are characterized by statistical reliability. A Cronbach alpha of
.85 was reported for the task or mastery goal orientation scale. In terms of the
performance or ego goal orientation scales, a reliability estimate of .89 was reported for
the performance or ego approach goal orientation scale, and a .74 was reported for the
performance or ego avoidance goal orientation scale.
Mastery, performance-approach and performance-avoidance means for each
respondent were derived from the sum totals of the subscale items averaged by the
number of responses to the subscale items. Overall subscale means were based on the
average of the mean responses from each student in the sample. Higher mean scores on
the mastery subscale reflected a mastery orientation, higher mean scores on the
performance-approach subscale reflected a performance-approach orientation, and higher
mean scores on the performance-avoidance subscale reflected a performance-avoidance
orientation.
Self-efficacy. The Academic Self-Efficacy Scale from the Patterns of Adaptive
Learning Survey (see Appendix D) was used to measure students level of academic self-
efficacy (Midgley et al., 1996). The scale consisted of 5 items measuring students
perceptions of their competence to do class work. A five point Likert-type format was
used with items on the scale anchored at 1 = Not at all true, 3 = Somewhat true, and
5 = Very true. The Academic Self-Efficacy Scale from PALS has demonstrated
adequate validity from previous studies (Midgley, et al., 1995; Rosser, Midgley, &
Urdan, 1996) and adolescents ratings of this measure has reported a Cronbach alpha of
.78 for an estimate of reliability.
Academic self-efficacy means for each respondent was derived from the sum
totals of the subscale items averaged by the number of responses to the subscale items.
Overall subscale means were based on the average of the mean responses from each
student in the sample. Higher mean scores on the academic self-efficacy scale reflected
higher levels of academic self-efficacy.
Academic achievement. Academic achievement was measured in terms of
self-reported grade point average.

36
Procedures

The researcher developed an itinerary for high school visits based on preliminary
conferences with school officials as a means of establishing negotiation of entry and
gaining formal permission. During preliminary conferences, the researcher explained to
school officials the purpose of the study and the procedures involved. Negotiation of
entry and formal permission was obtained from school officials (see Appendix B) before
any data collection was conducted. Also, approval from the Institutional Review Board
(IRB) was secured before any data was collected (see Appendix A).
Sophomores, Juniors and Seniors from a nonrandom cluster sample of classes
were administered questionnaires by eight Language Arts teachers. Language Arts
teachers were used because of their willingness to participate, their access to students
from all grade levels, and their flexibility of scheduling. Questionnaires were
administered at various class periods during the school day, ranging form 8:00 a.m. to
3:00 p.m. The questionnaires required approximately 30 minutes for completion.
Teachers were given the discretion concerning what time block or period to administer
the questionnaire based on their schedule.
Informed consent was obtained from all potential subjects as well as their parents.
Informed consent forms (see Appendix F) were sent home with all participants to obtain
permission from the parents for data collection. Before any data was collected, the study
purpose and procedures were thoroughly explained to students, parents and school
officials.
Questionnaires were administered to students by their teachers during Spring
2006. Teachers were required to attend a training session on administering the
questionnaires conducted by the researcher. Standardized instructions for administering
the questionnaires were established (see Appendix E). Teachers were instructed initially
to pass out parental consent forms to those students interested in the study. Teachers
further informed students that before they could participate, the consent form should have
their parents signature, and that upon returning the consent form signed, they would be
required to read a youth assent form (see Appendix F). Teachers were instructed to read a
verbal script (see Appendix F) to potential student participants, informing them of the
purpose, procedures, their rights to refuse participation or withdraw, exposure to minimal
harm, confidentiality and possible study benefits before permitting them to sign the youth
assent form. Finally, teachers instructed students to place both the parental consent form
and the youth assent form signed on one side of their desk with their name included
before proceeding to complete the standardized instruments. Students were given specific
instructions for completing the instruments by their teacher.
Only those students who provided their assent by agreeing to the conditions of
participation for the study were recruited as participants. Students were informed that
they retain the right to withdraw from the study at any time without experiencing any
detriment to their grade. However, no one withdrew from the study. Approximately a
response rate of ten percent was acquired by the researcher. Each student was rewarded a
candy bar once they submitted all of the required information.
Questionnaires were collected by the researcher and school officials upon
completion. Students names and any identifying information were kept anonymous. The
names of the students were only included on the consent form accompanying the

37
questionnaires. Data were stored and locked in a secure filing cabinet at the college
where the researcher was employed.

Data Analysis

Correlations, hierarchal multiple regression and analysis of variance (ANOVA)


were the analyses used for the study. Correlations were used to determine if significant
relationships exist between the variables of interest. Multiple hierarchal regression was
used to determine the amount of significant incremental variation added by the mediator
variables to parenting style in explaining the academic achievement of youth. Finally, an
analysis of variance was used to examine differences in dependent measures as a function
of specific demographic variables including sex, race and career plans after high school.

38
CHAPTER 4: RESULTS

The purpose of the study was to test the relationship between parenting style and
academic achievement of high school youth, and to examine the extent to which the
variables of motivation, goal orientation, and academic self-efficacy mediate the
relationship between parenting style and academic achievement. Descriptive means and
standard deviations derived from standardized measures are presented in Table 2.

Table 2. Means and Standard Deviations for Measures including Predictor and
Criterion Variables

Measures M SD
________________________________________________________________________

Parenting Style
Summary of Demand Items 2.6515 .74864
Summary of Response Items 3.4440 7.93431

Goal Orientation
Summary of Mastery Orientation Items 4.1892 .77329
Summary of Performance Approach Items 2.7716 1.05004
Summary of Performance Avoidance Items 2.9020 .98485

Academic Self-Efficacy
Summary of Academic Self-Efficacy Items 4.1838 .68671

Motivation
Summary of Challenge Items 2.7906 .61788
Summary of Curiosity Items 2.7179 .53492
Summary of Mastery Items 2.7365 .60420
Summary of Judgement Items 2.8191 .50409
Summary of Criteria Items 2.8647 .70708

Grades
Math grade point average 3.4955 .87687
English grade point average 3.6293 1.03403
Science grade point average 3.4909 .99231
Social Science grade point average 3.5108 1.04510
Overall grade point average 3.4874 .83469

39
Statistical Analysis

Correlational analyses were used to determine if significant relationships existed


between the variables of interest. Correlational analyses were also used to test for
significant differences in sex and gender (see Table 10, Appendix G). No significant
differences in sex and gender were found during the outset of the study. Racial categories
with smaller numbers were combined with larger groups because of their inadequacy for
statistical analysis as a subsample.
Multiple hierarchal regression was used to determine the amount of significant
incremental variation added by the mediator variables to parenting style in explaining
academic achievement of youth. Finally, an analysis of variance was used to examine
differences in dependent measures as a function of specific demographic variables
including sex, race and career plans after high school. The results are discussed around
each of the research questions and subsequent hypotheses.

Correlational Analyses

Research Question 1: What are the relationships between parenting style and
academic achievement with respect to motivation, goal
orientation and academic self-efficacy among high school
students?

Hypothesis 1: There will be a positive relationship between parenting style


and academic achievement.

Correlations between parenting style and the criterion variables are presented in
Table 3. The Bonferroni technique was applied to prevent Type I error due to multiple
tests and chance. Based on the Bonferroni technique, the alpha level was set at p < .01,
and levels of parental responsiveness or demandingness were not significantly correlated
with any of the criterion variables. Thus, the first hypothesis was not supported.

Table 3. Correlations between Parenting Styles and Criterion Variables

Parenting Style Math gpa English gpa Science gpa Social Science gpa GPA
________________________________________________________________________

Responsiveness -.102 -.170 -.187 -.231 -.195


Demandingness -.138 -.079 -.162 -.073 -.147
________________________________________________________________________

Hypothesis 2: There will be a positive relationship between parenting style


and motivation.

Correlations between parenting style and the motivation subscales of challenge,


curiosity, mastery, judgement and criteria are presented in Table 4. The Bonferroni

40
technique was applied to prevent Type I error due to multiple tests and chance. Based on
the Bonferroni technique, the alpha level was set at p < .01, and levels of parental
responsiveness were positively related to challenge, r (148) = .246, p < .01, curiosity, r
(148) = .246, p < .01, mastery, r (148) = .237, p < .01, judgement, r (148) = .257, p < .01,
and criteria, r (148) = .246, p < .01. However, parental demandingness was related only
to judgement, r (148) = .220, p < .01. Higher levels of parental responsiveness were
correlated with higher scores on all of the motivation scales which was indicative of
intrinsic motivation among participants. Consequently, the second hypothesis was
supported.

Table 4. Correlations between Parenting Style and Motivation Subscales

Motivation Subscales
Parenting Style Challenge Curiosity Mastery Judgement Criteria
________________________________________________________________________

Responsiveness -.246** -.246** .237** .257** .246**

Demandingness .190 .192 .163 .220** .189


________________________________________________________________________
** = p < .01
Hypothesis 3: There will be a positive relationship between parenting style
and goal orientation.

Correlations between parenting style and the goal orientation subscales of


mastery, performance approach and performance avoidance are presented in Table 5. No
significant correlations were found between parenting style and the goal orientation
subscales. Therefore, the third hypothesis was not supported.
Table 5. Correlations between Parenting Style and Goal Orientation Subscales

Performance Performance
Parenting Style Mastery Approach Avoidance

Responsiveness .010 .014 .057

Demandingness -.002 -.002 .069


________________________________________________________________________

Hypothesis 4: There will be a positive relationship between parenting style


and academic self-efficacy.

Correlations between the parenting style and academic self-efficacy are presented
in Table 6. The Bonferroni technique was applied to prevent Type 1 error due to multiple
tests and chance. Parenting style was not related to academic self-efficacy for
participants. Consequently, the fourth hypothesis was not supported.

41
Table 6. Correlations between Parenting Style and Academic Self-Efficacy

Parenting Style Academic Self-Efficacy

Responsiveness -.087

Demandingness -.177

Multiple Regression Analyses

Hierarchal multiple regression was used to test specific variables for the
regression model rather than relying on systematic selections from the SPSS program.
Hierarchal multiple regression provided information about the additive variance
contributed to the regression model as the variables of motivation, goal orientation and
academic self-efficacy were sequentially entered. Assumptions for normality of the
distribution and multicollinearity were met for the regression analysis.

Research Question 2: What are the mediating effects of motivation, goal orientation
and academic self-efficacy on the relationship between
parenting style and academic achievement of high school
students?

Hypothesis 5: Motivation, goal orientation and academic self-efficacy will


mediate the relationship between parenting style and
academic achievement of high school students.

Four regression models were developed as the mediating variables of motivation,


goal orientation and academic self-efficacy were sequentially entered to examine the
amount of incremental variance added to parenting style as a predictor of academic
achievement (GPA). Estimates for the Pearson r, standardized betas, R2, adjusted R2,
change in R2, t, and significance of t are reported in Table 7.

Table 7. Hierarchal Regression of Academic Achievement on Parenting Style,


Motivation, Goal Orientation and Academic Self-Efficacy
________________________________________________________________________
Standardized Adjusted Change in
2
Variable r Beta R R2 R2 t p
________________________________________________________________________

Model 1

Parenting Style

42
Table 7. Continued
________________________________________________________________________
Standardized Adjusted Change in
2
Variable r Beta R R2 R2 t p
________________________________________________________________________

Responsiveness -.191 -.203 -2.250 .026

Demandingness -.186 -.198 .076 .059 -2.195 .030

Model 2

Parenting Style

Responsiveness -.191 -.226 -2.772 .007

Demandingness -.186 -.129 -1.586 .116

Motivation

Challenge .396 .284 2.449 .016

Curiosity .203 -.230 -2.047 .043

Masterya** .356 .175 1.569 .120

Judgement .243 .077 .723 .471

Criteria .411 .246 .315 .271 .239 2.630 .010

Model 3

Parenting Style

Responsiveness -.191 -.229 -2.722 .008

Demandingness -.186 -.132 -1.589 .115

Motivation

Challenge .396 .274 2.120 .036

Curiosity .203 -.240 -2.019 .046

Masterya** .356 .179 1.474 .143

43
Table 7. Continued
________________________________________________________________________
Standardized Adjusted Change in
2
Variable r Beta R R2 R2 t p
________________________________________________________________________

Judgement .243 .083 .763 .447

Criteria .411 .247 2.566 .012

Goal Orientation

Mastery** .064 .012 .117 .907

Performance
Approach .041 .026 .208 .836

Performance
Avoidance .075 .006 .316 .252 .001 .047 .963

Model 4

Parenting Style

Responsiveness -.191 -.228 -2.701 .008

Demandingness -.186 -.130 -1.541 .126

Motivation

Challenge .396 .271 2.051 .043

Curiosity .203 -.237 -1.966 .052

Masterya** .356 .175 1.396 .166

Judgement .243 .083 .757 .451

Criteria .411 .245 2.518 .013

Goal Orientation

Mastery** .064 .003 .027 .979

Performance
Approach .041 .024 .187 .852

44
Table 7. Continued
________________________________________________________________________
Standardized Adjusted Change in
2
Variable r Beta R R2 R2 t p
_______________________________________________ ________________________

Performance
Avoidance .075 .008 .063 .950

Academic
Efficacy .248 .017 .316 .245 .000 .149 .882

**Note: Mastery is a goal orientation subscale, masterya is a motivation subscale.

For Model 1, academic achievement was only regressed on parenting style,


yielding an R2 of .076, and a p-value of .011. Therefore, Model 1 was not accepted. For
Model 2, academic achievement was regressed on parenting style first, and then
motivation. This regression model yielded an R2 of .315, an R2 change of .239, and a
p-value of .000. Therefore, Model 2 was accepted. For Model 3, academic achievement
was regressed sequentially on parenting style, motivation and goal orientation. This
regression model yielded an R2 of .316, an R2 change of .001, and a p-value of .983.
Therefore, Model 3 was not accepted. For Model 4, academic achievement was regressed
sequentially on parenting style, motivation, goal orientation and academic self-efficacy.
This regression model yielded and R2 of .316, an R2 change of .000, and a p-value of
.882. Therefore, Model 4 was not accepted.
Based on these results, motivation, goal orientation and academic self-efficacy
each added incremental variation to parenting style in explaining academic achievement.
The results indicated incremental increases in R2 changes across the regression models.
However, only the motivation subscales added significant incremental variation to
parenting style across the regression models. This finding was indicated by the
significance of the t estimates for the motivation subscales of challenge, curiosity and
criteria, reflecting the amount of significant incremental variance added to the
responsiveness scale in explaining academic achievement. Students scoring higher on the
scales of challenge, curiosity, criteria and responsiveness are intrinsically motivated and
come from authoritative homes. Therefore, students from authoritative homes that
possess an internal criteria and engage in academic tasks due to enjoyment of challenge
and satisfaction of curiosity, are more likely to produce higher achievement outcomes as
measured by grade point average.

Summary

In summary, motivation was the only variable that had a significant relationship
with academic achievement, and furthermore, added significant incremental variance to
parenting style in explaining achievement outcomes. Parenting style, goal orientation and
academic self-efficacy were not significantly related to academic achievement, and

45
moreover, did not contribute a significant amount of incremental variance to the
regression model. Significance results are reported in Tables 8 and 9.

Table 8. Significance Results from Correlations

Research Question: What are the relationships between parenting style and academic
achievement with respect to motivation, goal orientation and
academic self-efficacy among high school students?
________________________________________________________________________
Hypothesis Significance Result
________________________________________________________________________
1. Parenting style will have a positive relationship with achievement. Not significant
2. Parenting style will have a positive relationship with motivation. Significant
3. Parenting style will have a positive relationship with goal orientation. Not significant
4. Parenting style will have a positive relationship with self-efficacy. Not significant

Table 9. Significance Results from Regression Models

Research Question: What are the mediating effects of motivation, goal orientation and
academic self-efficacy on the relationship between parenting style
and academic achievement among high school students?
________________________________________________________________________
Regression Model Significance Result
______________________________________________________________________
1. Achievement regressed on parenting style Not significant
2. Achievement regressed on parenting style and motivation Significant
3. Achievement regressed on parenting style, motivation and Not significant
goal orientation
4. Achievement regressed on parenting style, motivation, Not significant
goal orientation and self-efficacy

Additional Findings

An analysis of variance was conducted to examine mean differences in math


grade GPA, english grade GPA, science grade GPA, social science grade GPA and grade
point average as a function of sex, race and plans after high school. Significant mean sex
differences were found for students english grade GPA, F (121) = 4.384, p < .038.
Female students had higher mean grade point averages for english than did their male
counterparts. No other differences were found between male and female students for
math grade GPA, science grade GPA, social science grade GPA or overall grade point
average (see Table 11).
Table 12 presents racial group comparisons for math GPA, english GPA, science
GPA, social science GPA and overall grade point average. Mean differences as a function
of race were found for math GPA, F (117) = 2.545, p < .032, english GPA, F (121) =
4.711, p < .001, science GPA, F (118) = 4.627, p < .001, and overall grade point average,

46
F (127) = 3.476, p < .006. No racial differences were found in terms of social science
GPA.
Students were also categorized by their plans after high school (see Table 13).
Significant mean differences were found in terms of math GPA, F (114) = 5.206, p <
.007, english GPA, F (118) = 7.688, p < .001, science GPA, F (115) = 4.476, p < .013,
social science GPA, F (116) = 6.692, p < .002, and overall grade point average, F (124) =
8.346, p < .001. That is, students who planned to attend college full-time after graduation
had higher grades across subjects and overall grade point average than did students who
planned to work and go to college or enter into the military.
An additional ANOVA was conducted for parenting style, motivation, goal
orientation and academic self-efficacy to examine whether or not mean differences
existed as a function of plans after high school. Results of the ANOVA are presented in
Table 14. No significant mean differences in plans after high school were found in terms
of parenting style, motivation, goal orientation or academic self-efficacy.

47
CHAPTER 5: DISCUSSION

The purpose of the study was to test the relationship between parenting style and
academic achievement, and examine the extent to which the variables of motivation, goal
orientation and academic self-efficacy mediate this relationship. Results of this study will
be discussed in relation to the research questions. Moreover, additional findings and
implications for practitioners and future research will be presented. As a key limitation,
the researcher encountered inherent difficulties in obtaining the appropriate sample size
and data from the standardized measures.

Theoretical Implications

The findings of the study will be discussed in view of the theoretical frameworks
used to direct the research in testing the relationship between parenting style and
academic achievement, and examining the mediating effects of motivation, goal
orientation and academic self-efficacy. Conclusions will be drawn from the results in an
effort to provide empirical support for the theoretical frameworks and the hypotheses
derived from them. Possible evidence from the study results will be discussed in support
of Baumrinds typology on parenting styles, achievement goal theory and social cognitive
theory.

Parenting Style and Academic Achievement

Based on Baumrinds typology of parenting styles (1971), several researchers


have proposed that authoritative parenting contributes to higher academic achievement
(Glasgow, Dornbusch, Troyer, Steinberg & Ritter, 1997; Jones, Forehand & Beach, 2000;
Steinberg et al., 1994) whereas authoritarian and permissive parenting promotes lower
achievement outcomes (Dornbusch, Ritter, Leiderman, Roberts & Fraleigh, 1987;
Steinberg et al., 1992; Steinberg et al., 1994). Despite the widespread hypothesis that
authoritative parenting leads to higher academic achievement, Chao and Sue (1996)
found that authoritarian parenting contributed to higher achievement outcomes among
Asian students due to an emphasis on obedience and strictness in the culture.
The results of the present study did not support a positive relationship between
parenting style and academic achievement. It was hypothesized that there would be a
positive relationship between parenting style and academic achievement, and based on
the correlational analysis, higher levels of responsiveness (which indicated an
authoritative parenting style) or higher levels of demandingness (which indicated an
authoritarian parenting style) were not significantly related to grade point average or
grade point average in specific coursework. One reason for this finding may be that
parenting style may indeed be mediated by other individual factors that may strengthen or
contribute to its explanation of academic achievement (Ginsburg & Bronstein, 1993;
Grolnick & Ryan, 1989; Grolnick et al., 1991; Fang, Xiong & Guo, 2003; Gonzalez,
Greenwood & Wen Hsu, 2001; Gonzalez, Holbein & Quilter, 2002). In fact, several
researchers contended that the effect of parenting style on academic achievement was not
consistent across cultures, ethnicity or socioeconomic status (Spera, 2005; Hae-Song &
Bauer, 2002; Joshi, Ferris, Otto & Regan, 2003) and others proposed that once certain

48
variables are controlled for, parenting style may account for little or no variance in
achievement outcomes (Pittman & Chase-Lansdale, 2001; Weiss & Schwartz, 1996).
One implication of the results is that parenting style may need to be
reconceptualized into more specific components. The present study operationalized
parenting style by using only responsiveness and demandingness scales to measure
authoritativeness and authoritarianism, respectfully. From the results of the present study,
it is recommended that the operationalization of parenting style should include measures
on permissiveness to have a study sample more representative of all parenting practices
and ensure that the results can be better generalized.
Chao and Sue (1996) also proposed the need to reconceptualize authoritative and
authoritarian parenting styles into two different aspects (e.g., general and academic) in
order to determine which had a greater impact on school performance. Due to the lack of
generalizability of the positive effect of authoritative parenting on achievement outcomes
for Asian students, educationally-specific measures of authoritarian parenting styles may
better predict academic achievement. Macoby and Martin (1983) also reconceptualized
parenting style by adding additional components such as permissive parenting, and its
subcategories, neglectful and indulgent parenting.
It appears that parenting style is insufficient alone in explaining achievement
outcomes based on grade point average. Perhaps the use of standardized tests may be
better indicators of academic achievement beyond self-reported grades. In earlier studies,
it has been suggested that self-reported grades are a better indicator of academic
performance, whereas standardized tests are a better indicator of academic achievement
(Mullis, Rathge & Mullis, 2003). In many cases, self-report grades are only a reflection
of test-taking ability, whereas standardized tests are actually a more accurate measure of
mastery of material.

Parenting Style and Motivation

Previous research supports a positive correlation between authoritative parenting


and intrinsic motivation (Ginsburg & Bronstein, 1993). This hypothesized relationship
was also found to be important in the present study. Based on the correlational analysis,
higher levels of responsiveness (reflecting an authoritative parenting style) were
correlated with higher scores on all of the motivation subscales (reflecting an intrinsic
motivation). However, higher levels of demandingness (reflecting an authoritarian
parenting style) were only positively correlated with higher scores on the judgement
subscale.
Such findings provide further evidence for the need to examine intrinsic
motivation as a mediating influence contributing to the strength of parenting style as a
predictor of academic achievement. Based on the present study, authoritative parenting
was positively related to intrinsic motivation, and several studies have linked intrinsic
motivation with higher achievement outcomes (Adelman, 1978; Gottfried, 1983, 1985;
Adelman & Taylor, 1983). Therefore, due to its strong association with both authoritative
parenting and academic achievement, intrinsic motivation may significantly narrow the
gap in explaining achievement outcomes based on Baumrinds typology of parenting
styles. Based on this possible assumption from the study results, students from
authoritative homes who utilize an internal criteria as a means of evaluating success and

49
engage in academic tasks due to enjoyment of challenge and satisfaction of curiosity may
be more likely to produce higher achievement outcomes. Furthermore, the incorporation
of intrinsic motivation more in parenting practices, teaching strategies and guidance may
lead to higher academic achievement.

Parenting Style and Goal Orientation

No significant correlations existed between parenting style and goal orientation.


Results of the present study were inconsistent with the findings of previous research,
hypothesizing a positive correlation between mastery orientation and authoritative
parenting (Gonzalez, Greenwood & WenHsu, 2001). Also, according to achievement
goal theory, mastery orientation has been traditionally linked to higher achievement
outcomes (Albaili, 1998; Tanaka & Ysmauchi, 2001). The present study failed to support
the assumptions of achievement goal theory because none of the goal orientation
subscales were related to any of the criterion variables measuring academic achievement.
Parenting Style and Academic Self-Efficacy
Based on her theoretical framework of parenting styles, Baumrind proposed that
children of authoritative parents had stronger beliefs in their own efficacy or competence
when faced with the challenges of academic tasks (Baumrind, 1973; Baumrind & Black,
1967). Based on the correlational analysis, Baumrinds typology of authoritative and
authoritarian parenting styles as an explanation of academic self-efficacy was not
supported. Results indicated that higher levels of responsiveness (reflecting an
authoritative parenting style) or higher levels of demandingness (reflecting an
authoritarian parenting style) were not significantly related to levels of academic self-
efficacy. One possible explanation may be that parenting style may be related to
academic self-efficacy only through intrinsic motivation. Students from authoritative
families tend to be more intrinsically motivated (Ginsburg & Bronstein, 1993) and
therefore may have higher levels of academic self-efficacy or stronger cognitive beliefs
about their mastery of academic tasks.
Moreover, the correlational analyses indicated that academic self-efficacy was not
related to academic achievement. The study results did not support Banduras social
cognitive theory, which postulates students self-perceptions about their competence
leads to behavior that determines favorable outcomes (Bandura, 1997; 1995).
Consequently, the hypothesis derived from Banduras social cognitive theory proposing
that self-efficacy contributes to the academic achievement of students was not supported
as well (Bandura, 1997, 1995: Schunk, 1991).

Sex, Race and Criterion Variables

The effects of sex and race on the criterion variables support recent findings by
the Department of Education (2005). Sex was related to english grades in the present
study. The results support the findings of the National Assessment of Educational
Progress (NAEP) which indicated that in 2002, female students average writing scale
scores were higher than male students by 25 points at grade 12, with a significant
increase in the gap between 12th grade males and females between 1998 and 2002
(Department of Education, 2005). Taking into account the results of the present study and

50
the recent findings of the NAEP, it may be assumed that score gaps between males and
females in english continue to remain as important differences for this age group. A
possible explanation for the continuation of these differences may be that females
outperform males in english because of the influence of gender expectations and gender
stereotypes in student/teacher interactions that may promote the higher achievement of
females (Evans & Davies, 2000).
According to national trend data, racial disparities continue to persist as well. The
present study found significant mean differences in math grade as a function of race. The
results of the study supported the findings of the NAEP, which indicated that in 2005, at
both grades 4 and 8, White students scored higher in math on average, than Black and
Hispanic students. At grade 8, changes in the score gap between White students and
minority students were not significant from 1990 to 2005. So although score gaps in math
continue to exist between White students and minorities, the differences may not be as
significant as before.
Mean differences also existed in english grade as a function of race. The results
supported the racial/ethnic disparities in writing as reported by the NAEP. Between
White and Black students in grade 12, national trend data indicated an increase in the
score gap from 21 to 24 points from 1998 to 2002. Between White and Hispanic students
in grade 12, national trend data indicated a decrease in the score gap from 19 to 18 points
from 1998 to 2002. However, any apparent differences in the racial/ethnic gaps since
1998 at grade 12 were not found to be statistically significant (Department of Education,
2005). Based on the present study and recent national trend data, it may be assumed that
differences in english scores may continue to persist due to race or ethnicity, but the
disparities will not become increasingly more significant.
Significant gaps continue to persist also in science. Based on the present study,
mean differences in science grade were related to race. The results from the study support
the findings of the NAEP that in grade 12, at 36 points, the score gap between White and
Black students in 2005 was about the same as it was in 1996, but has widened since 2000.
The score gap of 28 points between White and Hispanic students has not been
significantly different from any previous assessments (Department of Education, 2005).
Consequently, based on the present study and the recent findings of the NAEP, it may be
assumed that significant gaps in science scores will continue to persist between Whites
and minorities, but the differences may continue to worsen for black students.
A few possible explanations can be proposed for disparities in academic
achievement as a function of race. First, minority students usually have less access to
cultural and social assets and their parents have fewer opportunities for the disposal of
leisure money. A deficiency of access to cultural and social assets that promote academic
competency, and exposure to fewer cultural experiences and resources can predispose
students for higher achievement outcomes (Bourdieu & Passeron, 1990). Also, lack of
opportunity for the disposal of leisure money for tutors, computers and educational trips
can influence achievement outcomes. Second, minority students are less likely to have a
higher quality education. This is evident because minority students usually attend poorer
schools with fewer resources and qualified teachers (Kozol, 1991). Finally, minority
students are more likely to experience institutional discrimination and cultural bias.
Institutional discrimination occurs due to racial stereotypes and cultural bias results from

51
standardized tests that may not reflect the experiences of minority students (Mooney,
Knox & Schacht, 2002).

Plans After High School and Academic Achievement

Based on a one-way ANOVA school grades varied significantly due to plans


after high school. Students with plans to attend college full-time had significantly higher
means in regard to math grade, english grade, science grade, social science grade, and
grade point average than students who planned to work and go to college or enlist in the
military. One explanation would be that students who have higher aspirations for
educational attainment and plan to devote more time to academic pursuits are more likely
to have higher grades.

Mediating Effects

Only motivation contributed significant incremental variance to parenting style in


explaining academic achievement. Significant changes in R2 occurred when motivation
was sequentially added to parenting style in the regression model, but significant
increases in variance did not continue as the other predictors were entered. The results
from the regression analysis support Baumrinds theoretical framework (1971), which
proposed that authoritative parenting produces higher achievement outcomes. In the
regression analysis, higher scores on the responsiveness scale, which indicated an
authoritative parenting style, contributed a significant amount of incremental variance in
explaining academic achievement. Additionally, the t estimate for the responsiveness
scale and its corresponding significance provided further evidence for parenting style as a
significant predictor.
Similarly, the results from the regression analysis also support motivation as a
significant predictor of academic achievement. Several researchers have hypothesized
that intrinsic motivation produces higher achievement outcomes (Adelman, 1978;
Gottfried, 1983; 1985). In the regression analysis, higher scores on the challenge,
curiosity and criteria subscales, which indicated intrinsic motivation, contributed a
significant amount of incremental variance to responsiveness in explaining academic
achievement. The t estimates for the challenge, curiosity and criteria subscales and their
corresponding significance provided further evidence for intrinsic motivation as a
significant predictor in addition to responsiveness.
Based on the results, one possible explanation emerges. Students scoring higher
on the subscales of challenge, curiosity, criteria and responsiveness are intrinsically
motivated and come from authoritative homes. Therefore, students with internal criteria,
who engage in academic tasks due to enjoyment of challenge and satisfaction of curiosity
are more likely to produce higher achievement outcomes.
Given the conclusions drawn from the results, there are several facets of
investigation that exist for explaining academic achievement. This study has focused on
the linear relationships between variables of parenting style, motivation, goal orientation
and academic self-efficacy, and the examination of their effect as predictors of academic
achievement. However, further research may need to emphasize reciprocal relationships
by exploring the possibility of academic achievement as a predictor of parenting style,

52
motivation, goal orientation and academic self-efficacy, and the subsequent effects of
these regressions on achievement as a continuous cycle.
Also, academic achievement should be examined more from a contextual view.
Parenting style is just one dimension of context that is derived from parenting practices
within the family environment. Other researchers have suggested that academic
performance can be predicted from contextual variables such as social capital (e.g.,
parental networks, student networks), resource capital (e.g., parent education, parent
income, education items at home) and student misbehavior. The researchers found both
social and resource capital not to be strong predictors of academic performance, and
school behavior to mediate as the strongest predictor (Mullis, Rathge & Mullis, 2003).

53
Implications for Future Practice

Several implications can be made for future practice from the study results and
conclusions. Teachers should engage students in academic tasks that promote more
intrinsic motivation, instead of routine tasks that focus on test preparation and
standardized performance. Academic tasks that stimulate intrinsic motivation by
channeling a students sense of curiosity, challenge and satisfaction will promote higher
achievement outcomes. For example, assignments and projects that relate to a students
interests and career goals as well as make meaningful connections between their
classroom experience and the real world should be used. However, teachers should be
aware that some forms of extrinsic motivation can promote higher intrinsic motivation,
and therefore higher achievement outcomes.
Also, teachers should be more sensitive to diverse parenting environments, and
take into account a students predominant parenting style in devising their teaching
methods. Additionally, teachers should consider the appropriateness of all three parenting
styles to different environmental situations, including the educational setting. Teachers
should remember that authoritative parenting, in particular, is ideally suited for the
educational setting due to its strong relationship with intrinsic motivation, which in turn
promotes higher achievement outcomes. Lastly, teachers should be aware that academic
achievement is impacted by multiple influences.
Guidance counselors should not direct students in their high school curriculum
and career goals based solely on standardized tests and grades. Guidance counselors
should take more into account a students aspirations or plans after high school, and
encourage students to fulfill their highest potential despite test scores and grades.
Guidance counselors should motivate students to raise their own aspirations regardless of
race or social class background. Like teachers, guidance counselors can be a source of
extrinsic motivation to promote a greater sense of intrinsic motivation in students, and
thus, higher achievement outcomes. For example, students may achieve higher due to a
greater degree of aspiration (intrinsic) encouraged by their guidance counselor (extrinsic).
School social workers can provide resources in the community (e.g., parenting
classes) that can help improve the skills for parents in rearing their children in a way that
is more conducive for higher achievement outcomes. School social workers should offer
parenting classes that incorporate an authoritative style of parenting based on the findings
and recommendations of previous research. However, the diverse parenting styles of
multicultural populations should be considered in developing any programming for
parents. Also, school social workers should provide resources for disadvantaged families
that increase resource and social capital, and therefore promote higher achievement
outcomes.
Parents should have a greater awareness of the resources that may help them with
the skills to provide a parenting environment more conducive for higher achievement
outcomes. Thus, in having greater resource capital, parents can help improve their childs
academic achievement. Also, being a part of parental networks can promote greater social
capital, and increase achievement outcomes. Like teachers, parents should also
understand that achievement is influenced by multiple contexts.
In summary, recommendations for future practice should include more
incorporation of intrinsic motivation in parenting practices, teaching strategies and

54
guidance as a means to improve achievement outcomes. Parents, peer leaders, siblings,
employers and other mentors should join teachers and guidance counselors in a
collaborative effort to promote more learning opportunities that foster and raise the
intrinsic motivation of students. Parent universities, career days, college visitations, life
skills workshops, PTO, peer education programs, internships and school/business
collaborations are examples of learning opportunities that can help raise the aspiration
and thus, the intrinsic motivation of students, and provide parents with the necessary
skills to assist their child academically.

Implications for Future Research

Based on the results and discussion, several recommendations can be made for
further study. It is also important to underscore the limitations of the study in providing
direction for the replication of the research. The present study provides significant
findings in understanding the variance in academic achievement due to the influence of
predictor or mediator variables, and raises additional questions for further scientific
inquiry.
The researcher recommends that parenting style should be conceptualized into
more specific aspects or dimensions when measuring its effects upon a dependent
variable. The present study only used a responsiveness scale to measure authoritative
parenting and a demandingness scale to measure authoritarian parenting. Parenting style
should be operationalized more accurately by including measures of permissiveness in
addition to responsiveness and demandingness scales. Buris Parental Authority
Questionnaire (1991) is highly recommended as a more appropriate measure of parenting
style because it includes a measure of permissive parenting and incorporates all possible
parenting practices, thus ensuring a more representative and generalizable sample.
Several researchers have reconceptualized parenting style (Chao & Sue, 1996; Macoby &
Martin, 1983).
Measures of maternal and paternal authoritativeness, authoritarianism and
permissiveness should be included to further delineate the effects of both mothers and
fathers on parenting. In the present study, participants were instructed to assess parenting
style based on the parent who was most influential in raising them.
Additional ANOVAs should be conducted to further investigate the effect of
demographics on criterion and predictor variables. Math grade, english grade, science
grade, social science grade, and grade point average all differed significantly as a
function of plans after high school. Future studies should underscore the impact that plans
after high school can have on academic achievement and predictor variables that may
further explain its variance.
Limitations included the use of Paulsons Parenting Style and Parental
Involvement Questionnaire (1996), which included only two measures of parenting style
(e.g., authoritative and authoritarian parenting), instead of Buris more robust Parental
Authority Questionnaire (1991), and the use of only self-report measures of academic
achievement. Self-report measures present a problem with respondent bias. Future studies
should use archival data or existing data sources in addition to self-report measures to
ensure more valid results. In addition, another major limitation was the skewness of the
sample selected. Approximately 68% were 11th graders, 61% were females, and 93%

55
were college-prep. A more randomized sample including a wider cross-section of high
school students should be used. The present study was limited to a nonrandom cluster
sample of classes that were conveniently available due to block scheduling and lack of
access to high school student populations. The study was limited to high school students
in rural, south central Georgia.
A final limitation included only the use of students in assessing the perceptions of
parenting style. In the present study, parenting style was only assessed by high school
students through self-report instruments. Future studies should use assessments of
parenting style by a panel of experts and laypersons including students, parents, teachers,
guidance counselors and administrators. Ultimately, for the future research, the
researcher recommends that school administrators and board members should commit all
grades to study and follow-up the research utilization effort as a complete buy-in to the
process.

Executive Summary

A summary report will be submitted to teachers and school officials outlining the
research findings, and implications for practice and research. The researcher will also
present the research findings and implications to students, parents and board members at
the high school or at school board meetings. Students, parents, teachers, administrators
and board members will be properly notified of the research presentations.

56
APPENDIX A

Statement on Human Subjects Committee Approval

The Human Subjects Application along with copies of the standardized


instruments, the consent forms, and answers to pertinent questions concerning the
research study have been submitted and approved by the Human Subjects Committee. A
copy of the approval letter from the Human Subjects Committee is included in the
appendices.

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APPENDIX B

Statement on Permission from Tift County and Cook County High Schools

The researcher met with Tift County and Cook County school officials to
negotiate entry into the high school to collect data for the research. In meeting with the
school officials, the researcher thoroughly explained the study purpose, methods and
procedures before soliciting permission for collection of the data. A letter of permission
from Tift County High School and Cook County High School is included in the
appendices. Upon completion of the study, the researcher will provide the students,
parents, teachers, Tift County Board of Education, the Cook County Board of Education,
and school officials with an Executive Summary of the study results. Presentation of the
study results will also be made available to all interested parties.

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APPENDIX C

Statement on Permission to use Standardized Instruments

All standardized instruments included in the study were a part of the public
domain and are accessible to the public without copyright permission.

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APPENDIX D

Copies of Standardized Instruments and Demographic Questionnaire

1. Parenting Style and Parental Involvement Questionnaire (PSPI)

2. Patterns of Adapted Learning Scales (PALS)

3. Harters Scale on Intrinsic Versus Extrinsic Motivation

4. Demographic Questionnaire

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Demographic Questionnaire

Please circle the number that corresponds to your response:

A. What is your gender? B. What is your race?


1. Male 1. American Indian or Alaska Native
2. Female 2. Asian
3. Black or African American
4. White
5. Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander
6. Hispanic
7. Biracial
8. Other race _________________

C. What grade are you in? D. What is your age?


1. 12th grade 1. 18 or older
2. 11th grade 2. 17
3. 10th grade 3. 16
4. 9th grade 4. 15
5. 14

E. What is your birthdate?


Month __________
Day __________
Year __________

F. What grades did you earn last term?


(Please indicate the letter grade with + or where appropriate, and check
whether each of the classes was honors or regular )
Math ________ Honors ____ Regular ____
English ________ Honors ____ Regular ____
Science ________ Honors ____ Regular ____
Social Science ______ Honors ____ Regular ____

G. What is your diploma program? (Please circle one)


1. College Prep
2. College Prep AP
3. Tech Prep
4. General or Regular

H. With whom do you live? (Circle all that apply)


1. Biological Mother 9. Biological Father
2. Stepmother 10. Stepfather
3. Grandmother 11. Grandfather
4. Aunt 12. Uncle
5. Other Female Relative 13. Other Male Relative

105
6. Adoptive Mother 14. Adoptive Father
7. Foster Mother 15. Foster Father
8. Other Female Non-Relative 16. Other Male Non-Relative

I. Which was most influential in raising you? (Circle all that apply)
1. Biological Mother 9. Biological Father
2. Stepmother 10. Stepfather
3. Grandmother 11. Grandfather
4. Aunt 12. Uncle
5. Other Female Relative 13. Other Male Relative
6. Adoptive Mother 14. Adoptive Father
7. Foster Mother 15. Foster Father
8. Other Female Non-Relative 16. Other Male Non-Relative

J. What are your plans following completion of high school?


(Please circle one of the following)
1. Work full-time
2. Attend college full-time
3. Work and attend college
4. Enlist in the military

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APPENDIX E

Instructions for Standardized Administration of Measures

1. General Instructions for Survey Administration

2. Standardized Instructions for the Parenting Style and Parental Involvement


Questionnaire (PSPI)

3. Standardized Instructions for the Patterns of Adaptive Learning Survey (PALS)

4. Standardized Instructions for Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic Orientation Scale

5. Standardized Instructions for the Demographic Questionnaire

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APPENDIX F

Copies of Consent Forms

1. Parental Consent Form for Minors

2. Written Child Assent Form

111
112
113
114
APPENDIX G

Table 1. Demographic Characteristics of the Study Sample

Table 2. Means and Standard Deviations for Scale Variables

Table 3. Correlations between Parenting Style and Criterion Variables

Table 4. Correlations between Parenting Style and Motivation Subscales

Table 5. Correlations between Parenting Style and Goal Orientation Subscales

Table 6. Correlations between Parenting Style and Academic Self-Efficacy

Table 7. Hierarchal Regression of GPA on Predictor Variables

Table 8. Significance Results from Correlations

Table 9. Significance Results from Regression Models

Table 10. Correltations between Demographic Variables and Criterion Variables

Table 11. ANOVA Comparisons of Math GPA, English GPA, Science GPA,
Social Science GPA and Grade Point Average as a Function of Sex

Table 12. ANOVA Comparisons of Math GPA, English GPA, Science GPA,
Social Science GPA and Grade Point Average as a Function of Race

Table 13. ANOVA Comparsion of Math GPA, English GPA, Science GPA,
Social Science GPA and Grade Point Average as a Function of
Plans After High School

Table 14. ANOVA Comparison of Parenting Style, Motivation, Goal Orientation


and Academic Self-Efficacy as a Function of Plans After High School

115
Table 1. Demographic Characteristics of the Study Sample ( N = 148)

Characteristic n %
________________________________________________________________________

Sex
Male 58 39.2
Female 90 60.8

Race
Asian 2 1.4
African-American 54 36.5
White 78 52.7
Pacific Islander 1 .7
Hispanic 8 5.4
Biracial 5 3.4

School
Tift County 97 65.5
Cook County 36 24.3
Turner County 2 1.4
Berrien County 1 .7
Worth County 5 3.4
Atkinson County 2 1.4
Ben Hill County 4 2.7
Colquitt County 1 .7

Grade
10th Grade 18 12.2
11th Grade 100 67.6
12th Grade 19 12.8
Not Specified 11 7.5

Age
14 2 1.4
15 5 3.4
16 53 35.8
17 65 43.9
18 21 14.2
Not Specified 2 1.4

Academic Track
College Prep 82 55.4
College Prep AP 37 25.0
Tech Prep 24 16.2

116
Table 1. Continued

Characteristic n %
________________________________________________________________________

General/Regular 2 1.4
Not Specified 3 2.0

Future Plan
Work Full-time 1 .7
College Full-time 61 41.2
Work and College 76 51.4
Military 7 4.7
Not Specified 3 2.0

Family Composition
Both Biological 62 41.9
Both Biological/Stepparent 2 1.4
Biological/Stepparent 32 21.6
Grandparent 7 4.7
Single Parent Only 29 19.6
Single Parent/Other 3 2.0
Both Biological/Other 4 2.7
Biological/Stepparent/Other 2 1.4
Single Parent/Grandparent/Other 2 1.4
Other 5 3.4

Parental Influence
Both Biological 39 26.4
Both Biological/Stepparent 2 1.4
Biological/Stepparent 6 4.1
Both Biological/Grandparent 10 6.8
Grandparent 12 8.1
Single Parent Only 45 30.4
Single Parent/Grandparent 9 6.1
Single Parent/Other 2 4.1
Both Biological/Other 6 4.1
Single Parent/Grandparent/Other 6 4.1
Other 10 6.8
Not Specified 1 .7

117
Table 2. Means and Standard Deviations for Scale Variables (N = 148)

Measures M SD
________________________________________________________________________

Parenting Style
Summary of Demand Items 2.6515 .74864
Summary of Response Items 3.4440 7.93431

Goal Orientation
Summary of Mastery Orientation Items 4.1892 .77329
Summary of Performance Approach Items 2.7716 1.05004
Summary of Performance Avoidance Items 2.9020 .98485

Academic Efficacy
Summary of Academic Self-Efficacy Items 4.1838 .68671

Motivation
Summary of Challenge Items 2.7906 .61788
Summary of Curiosity Items 2.7179 .53492
Summary of Mastery Items 2.7365 .60420
Summary of Judgement Items 2.8191 .50409
Summary of Criteria Items 2.8647 .70708

Grades
Math grade point average 3.4955 .87687
English grade point average 3.6293 1.03403
Science grade point average 3.4909 .99231
Social Science grade point average 3.5108 1.04510
Overall grade point average 3.4874 .83469
________________________________________________________________________

118
Table 3. Correlations between Parenting Subscales and Criterion Variables
________________________________________________________________________

Parenting Subscales MATHGR ENGGR SCIGR SOSCIGR GPA


________________________________________________________________________

Responsiveness -.102 -.170 -.187 -.231 -.195

Demandingness -.138 -.079 -.162 -.073 -.147


________________________________________________________________________

p < .01 ( from Bonferroni Adjustment for Type I error)

Table 4. Correlations between Parenting Subscales and Motivation Subscales


________________________________________________________________________

Parenting Subscales Challenge Curiosity Mastery Judgement Criteria


________________________________________________________________________

Responsiveness .246** .246** .237** .257** .246**

Demandingness .190 .192 .163 .220** .189


________________________________________________________________________

p < .01 ( from Bonferroni Adjustment for Type I error)

Table 5. Correlations between Parenting Subscales and Goal Orientation Subscales


________________________________________________________________________
Performance Performance
Parenting Subscales Mastery Approach Avoidance
________________________________________________________________________

Responsiveness .010 .014 .057

Demandingness -.002 -.002 .069


________________________________________________________________________

p < .01 ( from Bonferroni Adjustment for Type 1 error)

119
Table 6. Correlations between Parenting Subscales and Academic Self-Efficacy
________________________________________________________________________

Parenting Subscales Academic Self-Efficacy


________________________________________________________________________

Responsiveness -.087

Demandingness -.177
________________________________________________________________________

p < .01 ( from Bonferroni Adjustment for Type I error)

120
Table 7. Hierarchal Regression of Academic Achievement on Parenting Style,
Motivation, Goal Orientation and Academic Self-Efficacy
_______________________________________________________________________
Standardized Adjusted Change in
Variable r Beta R2 R2 R2 t p
________________________________________________________________________

Model 1

Parenting Style

Responsiveness -.191 -.203 -2.250 .026

Demandingness -.186 -.198 .076 .059 -2.195 .030

Model 2

Parenting Style

Responsiveness -.191 -2.772 .007

Demandingness -.186 -1.586 .116

Motivation

Challenge .396 .284 2.449 .016

Curiosity .203 -.230 -2.047 .043

Masterya** .356 .175 1.569 .120

Judgement .243 .077 .723 .471

Criteria .411 .246 .435 .271 .239 2.630 .010


.
Model 3

Parenting Style

Responsiveness -.191 -.229 -2.722 .008

Demandingness -.186 -.132 -1.589 .115

121
Table 7. Continued
________________________________________________________________________
Standardized Adjusted Change in
2
Variable r Beta R R2 R2 t p
________________________________________________________________________

Motivation

Challenge .396 .274 2.120 .036

Curiosity .203 -.240 -2.019 .046

Masterya** .356 .179 1.474 .143

Judgement .243 .083 .763 .447

Criteria .411 .247 2.566 .012

Goal Orientation

Mastery** .064 .012 .117 .907

Performance
Approach .041 .026 .208 .836

Performance
Avoidance .075 .006 .316 .252 .001 .047 .963

Model 4

Parenting Style

Responsiveness -.191 -.228 -2.701 .008

Demandingness -.186 -.130 -1.541 .126

Motivation

Challenge .396 .271 2.051 .043

Curiosity .203 -.237 -1.966 .052

Masterya** .356 .175 1.396 .166

Judgement .243 .083 .757 .451

122
Table 7. Continued
______________________________________________________________________
Standardized Adjusted Change in
2
Variable r Beta R R2 R2 t p
________________________________________________________________________

Criteria .411 .245 2.518 .013

Goal Orientation

Mastery** .064 .003 .027 .979

Performance
Approach .041 .024 .187 .852

Performance
Avoidance .075 .008 .063 .950

Academic
Efficacy .248 .017 .317 .245 .000 .149 .882

** Note: Mastery is a goal orientation subscale, masterya is a motivation subscale.

Table 8. Significance Results from Correlations

Research Question: What are the relationships between parenting style and academic
achievement with respect to motivation, goal orientation and
academic self-efficacy among high school students?
________________________________________________________________________
Hypothesis Significance Result
________________________________________________________________________

1. Parenting style will have a positive relationship with achievement. Not significant
2. Parenting style will have a positive relationship with motivation. Significant
3. Parenting style will have a positive relationship with goal orientation. Not significant
4. Parenting style will have a positive relationship with self-efficacy. Not significant

Table 9. Significance Results from Regression Models

Research Question: What are the mediating effects of motivation, goal orientation and
academic self-efficacy on the relationship between parenting style
and academic achievement among high school students?
________________________________________________________________________
Regression Model Significance Result
________________________________________________________________________
1. Achievement regressed on parenting style Not significant

123
Table 9. Continued
________________________________________________________________________
Regression Model Significance Result
________________________________________________________________________
2. Achievement regressed on parenting style and motivation Significant
3. Achievement regressed on parenting style, motivation and Not significant
goal orientation
4. Achievement regressed on parenting style, motivation, Not significant
goal orientation and self-efficacy

Table 10. Correlations Among Demographic Variables and Criterion Variables

Demographics MATHGR ENGGR SCIGR SOSCIGR GPA


________________________________________________________________________

1. Sex -.043 .188* .037 .010 .073


2. Race .066 .131 .199* .012 .108
3. School -.005 -.161 -.152 .056 -.044
4. Grade -.049 -.045 -.044 -.049 -.187*
5. Age .029 .014 .019 .011 .022
6. Diploma -.093 .030 -.114 -.115 -.143
7. Plan -.262** -.301** -.237* -.285** -.303**
8. Household .054 -.105 -.015 -.079 -.026
9. Influence -.108 -.105 -.104 -.107 -.106
______________________________________________________________________
**p< .001

Table 11. Comparison of Math GPA, English GPA, Science GPA, Social Science
GPA and Grade Point Average as a Function of Sex
________________________________________________________________________
Male (58) Female (90)
_____________________________________________________________________

Criterion Variable M SD M SD F p
________________________________________________________________________

Math Grade GPA 3.5480 .87953 3.4721 .88078 .214 .644


English Grade GPA 3.4059 1.19924 3.7958 .85848 4.384 .038
Science Grade GPA 3.4580 1.03196 3.5319 .95586 .162 .688
Social Science GPA 3.4979 1.15504 3.5192 .97605 .012 .914
GPA 3.4294 .93237 3.5532 .75648 .682 .411

124
Table 12. Comparison of Math GPA, English GPA, Science GPA, Social
Science GPA and Grade Point Average as a Function of Race
________________________________________________________________________
Asian (2) Black (54) White (79) Hispanic (8) Biracial (5)
________________________________________________________________________

Criterion M SD M SD M SD M SD M SD F p
________________________________________________________________________

Math GPA 4.65 .212 3.25 .785 3.63 .879 3.70 1.11 .033 .751 2.55 .032
English GPA 4.65 .212 3.15 .992 3.93 .937 3.07 1.16 4.03 .404 4.71 .001
Science GPA 4.80 .000 3.01 .924 3.74 .910 3.71 .986 3.55 1.06 4.63 .001
Social Science 4.40 .141 3.28 .869 3.66 1.11 3.06 1.34 3.53 .681 1.60 .167
GPA 4.65 .071 3.20 .670 3.69 .866 3.43 .960 3.50 .608 3.48 .006

Table 13. Comparison of Math GPA, English GPA, Science GPA, Social
Science GPA and Grade Point Average as a Function of Plans After High School
________________________________________________________________________
College Full-time (61) Work and College (76) Military (7)
_______________________________________________________

Criterion Variable M SD M SD M SD F p
________________________________________________________________________

Math GPA 3.7732 .84434 3.2537 .84154 3.3800 1.00598 5.206 .007
English GPA 3.9897 .80801 3.2732 1.13946 3.5400 .71624 7.688 .001
Science GPA 3.7818 .90597 3.2411 .98623 3.4400 1.10589 4.476 .013
Social Science 3.8643 .84195 3.2036 1.02158 3.4400 1.42232 6.692 .002
GPA 3.8214 .72581 3.2422 .81432 3.4800 .79498 8.346 .001

Table 14. Comparison of Parenting Style, Motivation, Goal Orientation and


Academic Efficacy as a Function of Plans After High School
________________________________________________________________________
College Full-time (61) Work and College (76) Military (7)
___________________________________________________________

Criterion Variable M SD M SD M SD F p
________________________________________________________________________

Parenting Style

Responsiveness 2.6674 .58247 4.0977 11.05120 3.1429 .69985 .358 .783

Demandingness 2.5581 .74581 2.6382 .73827 3.2265 .49421 2.007 .116

125
Table 14. Continued
________________________________________________________________________
College Full-time (61) Work and College (76) Military (7)
_____________________________________________________________

Criterion Variable M SD M SD M SD F p
________________________________________________________________________

Motivation

Challenge 7.5765 20.97383 16.6009 34.12741 16.6667 36.307 1.151 .331

Curiosity 7.4563 20.99949 16.6250 34.11529 16.5952 36.344 1.185 .318

Masterya 9.0574 24.03034 16.5921 34.13104 16.5952 36.344 .762 .517

Judgement 7.5792 20.97197 15.4189 32.75374 16.5714 36.348 .948 .419

Criteria 7.7404 20.93645 16.6447 34.11153 16.5000 36.384 1.109 .348

Goal Orientation

Mastery 4.1738 .75231 4.1263 .80786 4.8571 .25071 2.150 .097

Performance
Approach 2.7115 1.09027 2.8289 .99423 2.4000 1.20554 .708 .549

Performance
Avoidance 2.8320 1.02948 2.9408 .97542 2.8929 .71962 .143 .934

Academic
Efficacy 4.3311 .62384 4.0789 .72006 3.9714 .78680 1.797 .150

126
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22
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH

Jewrell Rivers is the son of Mr. Jewrell Rivers, Sr. and Mrs. Ida Mae Rivers both of
Alamo, Georgia. He is their only son and brother to his three sisters: Barbara Williams of
Valdosta, Georgia; Debra Abernathy of Rex, Georgia; and Beverly Rivers of Alamo,
Georgia. Jewrell was born and raised in Alamo, Georgia, where he attended school
within the Wheeler County School System and graduated with honors. He is married to
the former Jannie Suzanne Townsend (now Jannie Suzanne Rivers) and is father to his
three boys: Adrian, Austin and Joshua.

Shortly after high school, he went on to continue his education at Valdosta State
University. While there he earned a B.S. in Psychology in 1988 and a M.S. in Sociology
in 1989. More importantly, it was at Valdosta State that he received Jesus Christ as his
Lord and Savior and accepted his call as a preacher in the ministry. Also, while he
worked on his graduate degree at Valdosta State University, he led and chartered the
Evangelistic Outreach Ministry, an inter-denominational campus ministry that offered
spiritual growth for college students through prayer meetings and bible studies.

Shortly after obtaining his masters degree at Valdosta State University, Jewrell was
hired by the Department of Sociology as a part-time instructor. Along with his teaching
responsibilities, he went on the serve as a part-time counselor in the Office of Minority
Affairs under the direction of Dr. Jerry Hardee. Eventually, he was made full-time
counselor within that department, and coordinator for the Minority Achievement Program
and the VSU Achievement Program. Since then, Jewrell has diligently served students
with undying vigor and enthusiasm by encouraging them to develop themselves
holistically and reach their highest potential. To Jewrell, this is a ministry of our Lord and
Savior Jesus Christ within itself.

In addition to working at Valdosta State University, Jewrell has also been employed at
Florida State University, where he taught marriage and family classes and served as an
academic advisor for students in the School of Social Work. Currently, he is employed at
Abraham Baldwin College in Tifton, Georgia as an Assistant Professor of Sociology.

Presently, he is working on his Doctorate in Family Relations at Florida State University.


With his vast educational background, Jewrell has conducted several marriage and family
workshops and youth seminars for the community within the South Georgia area. Also,
as a doctoral student he has presented workshops at professional conferences such as the
National Black Family Summit, the Graduate Leadership and Recruitment Conference
and the Minority Advising Coordinators and Minority Recruitment Officers Conference.
Upon completing his doctoral degree, he plans to use his education to continue to teach
and conduct research at the college or university level, as well as lecture and conduct
workshops for the black community and the Body of Christ.

Currently, under the guidance of Bishop Johnnie Quarterman, Jewrell serves as an


ordained minister in the Church of God. As a long-term goal, he plans to develop a Youth
and Family Institute to promote the stability of families, and implement youth

9
development initiatives to help young people realize their full potential. Overall, Jewrell
aspires and endeavors to minister to the needs of the African American community as a
preacher, professor, counselor, mentor and teacher. By the grace of God he has come this
far and achieved much. It is the grace of God that will take him on to accomplish greater
things for the Kingdom of God.

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