Pathways of adolescent college graduation expectations: Individual and maternal predictors
AdvisorBarber, Bonnie L.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractThe present study examined college graduation expectations of adolescents and young adults. A model to predict college graduation expectations of 10th grade students was developed based on Eccles' (1983) expectancy-value model. Both individual predictors (gender, school grades, self-concept of ability) and maternal predictors (maternal education; parental divorce; maternal standards, expectations, and encouragement; adolescents' perceptions of maternal advice and involvement) were included. A separate model was developed to describe and predict pathways of college graduation expectations over time, at 10th grade, at 12th grade, and at age 21. Individual predictors (early adolescent expectations, gender, school grades, self-concept of ability) and maternal predictors (maternal education, parental divorce) were examined. Data from seven waves (6th grade through age 21) of the Michigan Study of Adolescent Life Transitions (MSALT) were utilized. For the prediction of 10th grade expectations, 1352 adolescents and 784 mothers participated in at least one wave; for the prediction of expectation pathways, 868 adolescents provided data. A structural equation modeling (SEM) technique was used for the prediction of 10th grade expectations; a hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) technique was used for the prediction of pathways of expectations. The results of the SEM analyses suggested that self-concept of ability was positively related to 10th grade college graduation expectations, school grades were negatively related to expectations, and males tended to have higher expectations than girls when all variables in the model were taken into account. Maternal standards, expectations, and encouragement as well as adolescents' perceptions of maternal advice and support were positively related to expectations. The results of the HLM analyses suggested that in general, adolescents have stable pathways of college graduation expectations as they enter young adulthood. Gender, 7th grade college expectations, school grades, self-concept of ability, and maternal education level were associated with intercepts (10th grade) of college graduation expectations. The relation of gender to expectation slopes approached significance. Boys' slopes were more positive than girls' slopes. The importance of examining interindividual differences in intraindividual change is discussed.
Degree ProgramGraduate College
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