Christian home-school students' perceptions of their socialization

Mullins, Barbara Ann Burdo, Curry School of Education, University of Virginia
Morine Dershimer, Greta, Curry School of Education, University of Virginia
Canady, Robert L., Department of Leadership, Foundations and Policy Studies, University of Virginia
Estes, Thomas H., Curry School of Education, University of Virginia
Gansneder, Bruce, Curry School of Education, University of Virginia

The purpose of this study was to analyze Christian middle-school-aged home-school students' perceptions of their socialization. The researcher interviewed a total of ten middle-school-aged children. All student respondents were from rural localities, encompassing five Virginia counties.

The majority of the previous research on socialization within the home-school population was (a) focused on personality; (b) concentrating on self-esteem; and (c) designed to determine what practices home-school educators were using to meet the students' socialization needs. By contrast, this study was (a) focused on middle-school-aged students; (b) based on information obtained directly from the students themselves; and (c) designed to assess the students' perceptions of socialization in the home school.

In this study socialization was defined by seven areas: (1) personal identity; (2) personal destiny; (3) values and moral development; (4) autonomy; (5) relationships; (6) sexuality; and (7) social skills. These seven areas were identified by Johnson (1991) following an analysis of the developmental literature as well as the guidelines for socialization determined by the Virginia Department of Education for Virginia middle schools. These seven areas were used to form a structured interview for data collection. A content analysis of the student interviews was completed using the same seven areas of socialization as the framework.

Given the nature of qualitative studies, the findings and concluding statements were limited to the study population. Based on the literature regarding home schooling and analyzing the findings grounded in the data of this particular study, four major reflections have emerged and are as follows: (a) the majority of the students viewed socialization 'in the home school in a positive manner; (b) student perceptions were closely related to their degree of participation in the decision to be home schooled; (c) the literature regarding home schooling, while minimal, appears to be in accord with the majority of the students' perceptions, yet it lacks any direct reference to student participation in the decision to home school; and (d) much of the responsibility for the success of the home school with regard to socialization rests upon the home-schooling parent.

Note: Abstract extracted from PDF file via OCR.

EDD (Doctor of Education)
Home schooling, Sociological aspects, Evaluation, Student adjustment
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