Non-Traditional Families Single Parent Homes vs. Two Thesis

Pages: 20 (5460 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 15  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Children

Non-Traditional Families

Exercise Questions

The general topic covering this research is sociology and uncovering patterns within contemporary American society. This includes extrapolating the socio-cultural change that is occurring in modern day life. Within the larger discipline sociology, the research explores the genre of the modern family.

This change is not always a positive change. In fact, one such change is the increase of single parent, nontraditional family homes, which has been shown by research to have a correlative relationship between several socio-cultural changes occurring simultaneously because of this relationship (Pong et al., 2003; ). Unfortunately the increasing trends on the break down of the traditional family have been associated with negative consequences of the children within such families, including poorer academic performance (Jones, 2007; Huan, 2003). This may also have a hand in creating a situation where these children are finding limited opportunities for them once they reach adulthood, an element that can be tied to the increase of unemployment in the United States as well.

Question 3

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Thus, there is reason for the research to ask questions revolving how the rise in single parent families is affecting children of those family styles, and the average academic performances of the nation in general. What is the relationship between a rise in single family homes and later academic outcomes of the children from such origins?

Question 4

TOPIC: Thesis on Non-Traditional Families Single Parent Homes vs. Two Parent Homes Assignment

Here, there are two units of analysis. First are families, and more specifically the presence of parents in the household. This includes a look at single parent homes vs. traditional two parent families. The research also uses the individual. Are these familial issues affecting the children growing up within them? The research is focusing on examining a very individual unit of analysis to make larger assumptions about a whole group (Singleton & Straits, 2005). For this perspective, the research will be examining SAT scores based on average national statistics and those more associated with single parent families based on income levels.

Question 5

There are a few variables for analysis here. There are the rising levels on non-traditional families. Additionally, there is the academic performance of such children compared to children coming from a traditional family home.

Question 6

Here, the independent variable is the family style, whether the participants are from a single parent home or a traditional two parent family. Thus, the dependent variable is the effects of living in that family style.

Question 7

The research plans to establish causality between lowered academic achievements and presence of the single parent variable. The direction of the relationship is that single parent environments impact a student's academic achievement.

Question 8

Average income levels are the other major variable important to this research. Examining income levels, and the fact that they are on average lower for single parent families helps allow the research to use income-based data to help strengthen assumptions.

Question 9

Thus, the hypotheses are as follows: a) single parent families are on the rise and b) this is having an impact on modern youth academic performance.

Question 10

Here, the thesis statement is that the rise of single parent families is having an impact on average children's academic performance.

Question 11

The research will implore mostly quantitative methods, by using regression analysis to show the increase of single parent homes. However, it will also incorporate data from peer reviewed sources that show the corresponding SAT scores of children based on income.

Question 12

There are a number of theories which prove helpful. Socio-economic theories explaining that the lower the income the lower the achievement levels help structure the concept of single parent families. Such theory also posits that the lack of resources available to the single parent pose serious threats to children's academic performance. Moreover, theory describing psychological stresses involved with growing up in a single parent home help show why this might be occurring.

Question 13

The study relies on previously collected aggregate data from reliable government sources. This includes combined statistical information that was originally collected by a reliable organization or peer reviewed study (Singleton and Straits, 2005). The research states that "when information about individuals is aggregated to describe groups or collectives, the unit of analysis may either be the individual or the group," (Singleton and Straits, 2005, p 46). Thus, the study makes larger assumptions of the group based on individual statistics.

Research Questions

Are single parent homes on the rise?

Are these non-traditional families affecting the children growing up within them?

Week 2

Chapter 1: Introduction

There is a cultural change occurring in the United States. The nature of the family is increasingly developing into new genres. What were once predominately two parent families, the United States is seeing rising numbers of single parent families. This has cultural ramifications, in that it is essentially changing the fabric of society itself. Moreover, these single parent families are often associated with lower income averages than their two parent counterparts. This creates a new vision of the American family in a much different socio-economic position than what was seen fifty years ago.

Research Questions

From the primary literature investigation, there are some clear questions that become apparent right away. These research questions were then used to help direct the structure and direction of the following research. The primary research questions at the foundation of this research include the following:

Are single parent families on the rise?

Are these families bringing in lower income averages than their two parent home counterparts?

Is this impacting their children's academic performance?

Is this increase bringing down national averages of academic performance?

Problem Statement

Due to the increase in single parent families there has been a negative impact on the academic achievement of society's children. Exploring more about this relationship, and how income levels help stratify the boundaries between single and two parent families, this research can make larger assumptions about the issue. What is the relationship between increasing numbers of single families in the United States and the children's later lives? The data fills "the gap in comparative knowledge on single parenthood and children's school performance," (Pong et al., 2003, p 683). It is important to understand cultural changes as they occur, so that we as a society can react proactively to help provide more opportunities for populations being denied them by socio-economic factors.

Research Hypothesis

Based on the growing body of literature and statistical data on the subject, the research here will be able to explore these concepts thoroughly. However, before analysis can be conducted, it is important to extrapolate the hypotheses of this research in order to better test their validity. Thus, the research hypotheses include the following: a) the number of single parent families is on the rise, and will continue to rise in the future, b) this rise in single parent families is affecting the children within such environments by lowering academic achievement levels, and c) this increase is then bringing down national levels of academic achievements.

Week 3

Chapter 2: Literature Review

Rise of Single Parent Families and Subsequent Affects

There is an incredible wealth of information showing the rise in non-traditional families. Thus, it is clear that it is occurring across the globe in various degrees. From 1997 to 2001, the number of unmarried childbirths increased in the United States (Kennedy & Bumpass, 2008). This number began to climb midway through the twentieth century, and has gained in speed since. In 2007, there were over 13.7 million single parents with guardianship of over 21 million children (U.S. Department of Commerce, 2009). Today, this population makes up a large portion of American families. In fact, over 25% of all children in the United States lived with one parent only (U.S. Department of Commerce, 2009). This makes the issue a serious one, considering that so many American families are facing the consequences of these impacts.

There are several major consequences the literature posits as a result of life in a single parent home. First, "in general they face a higher risk of low academic achievement and of dropping out than do children who live in two-parent families," (Pong et al., 2003, p 684). The drops out rates are significantly higher in children coming from these non-traditional families. This is often associated with income levels as well, which are pervasive throughout the various consequences (Worth, 1992). Unfortunately, this higher risk of drop out rates often has a cyclical consequence of its own. Pong et al. (2003) posits that such individuals coming from single family homes that do drop out eventually have much lower opportunity than their counterparts who stayed in school. This eventually leads a majority of such individuals to repeat the cycle, as many end up in a single parent home situation with themselves as the parent, rather than the child this time around.

Additionally, research suggests that single parent families often suffer from generalized lower academic achievement (Jones, 2007). Thus, achievement while in school also tends to lag based on the presence of only a single parent. The… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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Non-Traditional Families Single Parent Homes vs. Two.  (2011, February 6).  Retrieved November 27, 2021, from

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