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ERIC Number: ED527912
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 207
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1245-5641-3
Associating with Occupational Depictions: How African American College Women Are Influenced by the Portrayals of Women in Professional Careers on Television
Vanderlinden, Mary E.
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, The George Washington University
This study examined ways portrayals of professional Black women on television influence the higher education and occupational choices of African American college women. The central research question of this study was: How do college age African American women make meaning of the portrayals of the people they see on television? Two analytic questions were also posed: (a) Do the portrayals of Black women on television influence the higher education curricular choices of African American college women? (b) Do the portrayals of Black women on television influence the career choices of African American college women? A qualitative methodology was used for this investigation. An interview guide was developed to aid in gathering data. Interviews were conducted with 15 African American female college students at two universities. Cycle coding was the process used to analyze data. The findings reached from this study are as follows: (a) participants indicated that negative images of Black women are dominant on television; (b) though participants predominately affiliate with characters of the same race and gender, they also look to portrayals of men and individuals of varying ethnicities; (c) participants sought favorite characters that share common behavioral traits with their life role models; (d) both mothers and characters influenced participants' decisions to attend college, however, their decision to enter a specific career was often guided by favorite characters or images viewed on television; (e) participants said the television characters that they most admired provided them with a sense of self affirmation. To contextualize this study, the following was examined (a) the rise of African Americans, and specifically Black females, on television, (b) television as a source of vocational information, and (c) challenges African American females encounter when making higher education and career decisions. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A