Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Nicolae Nistor


Students at a Title I middle school in Georgia have scored low on standardized state tests for several years. Of the many possible ways to address low test scores, the school focused on increasing parental involvement, which can have a strong positive correlation with academic success. Researchers have indicated that parental involvement programs are more successful when created based on the specific motivations of parents. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine the effects of parental motivation on parents' home-based and school-based involvement behaviors. The theoretical framework for this study was the work of Hoover-Dempsey and Sandler who determined 3 kinds of motivation to influence parental involvement behavior including personal motivation for involvement, invitations for involvement, and life context. A survey was used to collect data on the 3 kinds of motivation from 174 parents of 6th graders. Regression analysis revealed invitations for involvement to have a strong, positive effect on school-based involvement and a slight positive effect on home-based involvement behaviors. Life context had a moderate positive effect on home-based involvement. Personal motivations had no significant effect on either type of involvement behaviors. These results support some prior findings, but conflict with others, emphasizing that each school site is different and needs a customized approach. Recommendations included increasing invitations for parental involvement, which would increase both school-based and home-based involvement behaviors. Such use of the findings may positively affect social change by increasing parental involvement and ultimately the academic success of students.

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