ERIC Number: ED229103
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980-Aug
Reference Count: 0
The Effects of Maternal Employment on the Academic Attitudes and Performance of School-Aged Children.
Hoffman, Lois Wladis
Research on the relationship between maternal employment and academic orientations of school-aged children is critically reviewed, and avenues for future research are suggested. Most data reviewed are based on white, intact families. Patterns of academic orientation were found to differ by sex and, particularly for sons, by social class. Daughters of employed mothers tend to outperform daughters of nonemployed mothers, but this conclusion was based more on the general pattern of findings than on correlations between mothers' employment and daughters' academic scores. Sons presented a mixed picture. In the middle class, some data suggest that sons of employed mothers show lower academic performance; in the blue-collar class, modest evidence suggests that maternal employment is associated with higher performance. Few adequate studies of nonintact families, minorities, or very low-income groups exist, but data for this population generally show a positive relationship between maternal employment and the child's performance, except when employment is accompanied by particular stress. Several hypotheses to explain a possible adverse effect of maternal employment on middle-class sons' academic orientations are discussed, and specifications for independent, dependent, conditioning, and intervening variables are suggested for further research. (Author/RH)
Publication Type: Information Analyses
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Prepared for Families as Educators Team, National Institute of Education, Washington, DC.