Capstone/Dissertation Title

Parent Involvement in Family Literacy Programs

Term

Spring 3-20-2015

Capstone

Thesis

Degree Name

MAESL

Primary Advisor/Dissertation Chair

Ann Mabbott

Secondary Advisor/Reader One

Julia Reimer

Peer-Reviewer/Reader Two

Joan Bennett

Abstract

This is a case study of a small group of immigrant parents in an affordable housing community in an urban area in the Midwestern United States. It investigates why certain parents attend the organization’s family literacy (FL) program, while others do not regularly attend. The study examines both motivational and demographic information that might explain attendance differences through case studies of two parents, one who consistently attends and one who does not consistently attend FL programming. The themes that arose in the case studies are grouped into two major categories 1) family self-advocacy (parents’ active interest in children’s learning, ability to advocate for children’s education, and parents’ setting personal goals) and 2) program features (perception of the FL program quality, FL program design matching family demands, social interaction, and parents’ language modality preference). The study offers recommendations for FL based on these themes.

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