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PARENTAL INVOLVMENT, FAMILY STRUCTURE, AND ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT - page 45 / 102

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first, second, and third friend. The last parental involvement variable is a measure of how

often students discuss school related topics with parents, and it is created by combining

individual variables that measure: 1.) how often the student discussed school activities

with parents; 2.) how often student discussed school courses with parents; and 3.) how

often student discussed things studied in class with parents.

It comes as no surprise that each variable in a list such as this would quite likely

have a different effect on academic achievement. For example, the regression coefficients

in the original study demonstrate that after controlling for all other variables, the effect of

parental involvement on adolescent academic achievement as measured by parents’

attending school activities is not statistically significant and not as strong as the effect of

parental involvement as measured by parents’ discussing school activities with their

children which is statistically significant, positive and stronger. In this study, the

regression coefficients will be discussed in terms of the different types of parental

involvement, and every effort will be made to make the distinction between the different

types of parental involvement. A more detailed description of how each parental

involvement variable was created occurs near the end of this methods section.

Given the distinctions just mentioned regarding the different aspects of parental

involvement, it may seem counter-intuitive to revert to a discussion of parental

involvement as a monolithic variable; however, for the purpose of discussing limitations

in Jeynes’ original study, it will be helpful to briefly disregard the distinctions between

aspects of parental involvement. These limitations relate to the way parental involvement

actually occurs within the family and the way it is conceptualized and analyzed in Jeynes’

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