Theses Doctoral

Relationship of Family - Non-Family Support to the Academic Performance of Urban of Black Disadvantaged College Students

Malone, Rubie M.

The purpose of this research was to study the relationship between the levels of support from family and non-family members to the academic performance of urban black disadvantaged college students. The research was designed to answer the question of whether students who expected and received high family and/or non-family support would do better academically than those who expected high support but received low support. The conceptual framework on which the study was based was of "the family as a social system," as formulated by Biddle and Thomas.

Data were collected from 44 students at a four-year urban commuter college located in New York City. These students were first-semester freshmen. Some were in an educational opportunity program which limited its eligibility criteria to persons with high school averages below 80 and family incomes at or below the poverty level. The other portion of the sample group met all of the criteria listed, but was not in the educational opportunity program.

The students were administered a survey form at two times during the Spring 1980 semester. The instruments were designed by the researcher to elicit their perception of expectations of support and actual receiving of support from family and/or non-family members in the emotional, social, financial and informational categories. These categories continuously came up during counseling sessions with students.

A Kruskal-Wallis One-Way Analysis of Variance was performed to determine if there was a significant relationship between the degree of supportiveness from family and non-family members and the academic achievement of urban black disadvantaged college students. The results of the tests did not support the research hypothesis. However, there was definite relationship between support expected and support received.

The major implication of the study is that there may be other more important factors which have an influence on urban disadvantaged students' academic performance.

The implication for social workers in higher education is that as counselors they must be concerned with students and the promotion of policies that have overall social policy implications which will allow the higher education arenas to meet the range of students' needs with understanding and sensitivity.


More About This Work

Academic Units
Social Work
Thesis Advisors
Jones, James
Ph.D., Columbia University
Published Here
June 4, 2015