Longitudinal Predictors of Gender Attitudes and Relationships Among Gender Attitudes, Gender Identity and Educational choices of Black and White Youth Public Deposited

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  • March 19, 2019
  • Skinner, Olivenne
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Psychology and Neuroscience
  • This study focuses on two domains of gender development: Gender attitudes and gender identity. Based on Bronfenbrenner's bioecological model (Bronfenbrenner & Morris, 1997), and Eccles et al.'s (Eccles, 1987, 1994) model of achievement related choices, I hypothesized that individual characteristics and contextual factors are related to the development of youth's gender attitudes (Study 1), and that gender attitudes and gender identity are related to educational attainment expectations in Grade 11, traditionality of college major, and educational attainment three years post high school. Race and gender were examined as moderators of these relationships (Study 2). Data were drawn from the Maryland Adolescent Development in Contexts Study (MADICS; Eccles, 1997). Study 1 used four waves of longitudinal data across 7 years (N=1343). Study 2 data (N = 796) were from Grade 11 and three years post high school graduation. Results from Study 1 showed that youth endorsed more traditional gender attitudes over time, while still maintaining non-traditional beliefs. In Grade 8, boys endorsed more traditional gender attitudes than girls, and mothers' gender attitudes predicted their children's gender attitudes. Family contextual factors were unrelated to youth's gender attitudes. Gender attitudes and gender identity were stable across time, but there was no evidence that gender identity influenced gender attitudes. Limited support was found for the hypothesis that gender attitudes influence gender identity. In Study 2, endorsement of more traditional gender attitudes was negatively related to educational attainment expectations among boy and girls, but traditional gender attitudes predicted lower educational attainment among boys. Educational attainment expectations mediated the relationship between gender attitudes and educational attainment. Gender identity was also important in youth's achievement related choices. Boys who reported higher self-perceptions of femininity reported lower educational expectations, and youth of both genders who reported higher self-perceptions of femininity attained less education. Among boys, higher levels of masculine gender identity positively predicted educational attainment expectations and years of education. Girls' self-perceptions of masculinity were unrelated to educational expectations and attainment. Gender attitudes were unrelated to the traditionality of youth's college major; however, adolescent boys who reported higher self-perceptions of femininity reported less traditional college majors. Results did not vary by race.
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  • In Copyright
  • Kurtz-Costes, Beth
  • Jones, Deborah
  • Payne, B. Keith
  • Gariépy, Jean-Louis
  • Shanahan, Lilly
  • Doctor of Philosophy
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Graduate School
Graduation year
  • 2014
Place of publication
  • Chapel Hill, NC
  • This item is restricted from public view for 2 years after publication.

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