Degree Name

EdD (Doctor of Education)


Educational Leadership

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Louise L. MacKay

Committee Members

Russell O. Mays, Ronald A. Lindahl, Elizabeth Ralston


The purpose of this study was to examine specific parenting practices in four East Tennessee counties to determine their relationships, if any, to student achievement among various demographic groups. The investigation included status variables, such as parents' educational level, annual income level, and family structure. Students' Normal Curve Equivalent scores on the Terra Nova Standardized Test were used to measure student achievement. The Epstein (1987) typologies were used to classify parent involvement modalities.

The analysis consisted of four research questions and were tested at the .05 level of significance. Pearson's product-moment, Spearman's rho, and Kendall's Tau B correlation coefficients were used to analyze the degree of relationship between Epstein's six typologies and student achievement. A t-test was used to describe the relationship between student achievement and the number of parents in the home. One-way Analyses of Variance were used to describe the relationships between student achievement and parents' educational and income levels. Kruskal Wallis tests were used to analyze differences in parental involvement by the number of parents in the home, parental income, and education levels. A Hierarchical Regression Analysis was also used to determine the extent to which parents' income, educational levels, and family structure assist in predicting student achievement. The sample consisted of 413 students in grade 4 in four counties in East Tennessee. Two schools were selected from each county as a representative sample of the population.

The results of this study indicate significant relationships between student achievement and the parental involvement typologies of volunteering, learning at home, decision-making, and collaborating with the community. The relationships between student achievement and parental involvement in conjunction with parents' educational and income levels were also significant. Both parental involvement typologies and family demographics emphasize goals which are achieved most effectively when families and schools work together.

Document Type

Dissertation - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.