Term of Award

Summer 2022

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Curriculum Studies (Ed.D.)

Document Type and Release Option

Dissertation (open access)

Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.


Department of Curriculum, Foundations, and Reading

Committee Chair

Robert Lake

Committee Member 1

Sabrina Ross

Committee Member 2

Meca Williams-Johnson

Committee Member 3

Cristy Kessler

Committee Member 3 Email



Homeschooling is a familiar form of education, but nuances such as purposes, curriculum and impact on students are less understood due to minimal studies and lack of participation. Existing research has focused on motivations for homeschooling; however glaring gaps exist regarding the impact on student development. This study is essential due to concerns regarding the impact on student identity as well as the recent increase in the number of homeschoolers from a pandemic and other political trends. In an effort to pull back the curtain on the dominant conservative Christian homeschool milieu this study employed a qualitative ethnographic methodology which allowed the voices of female students to articulate the realities of their experience and impact on their adulthood. The study focused on the question “How do homeschooled women develop a definition of their roles as women?” while also considering the process of transmission of beliefs and realities of gender roles. In order to address the research question the study applied communication and self-efficacy theoretical frameworks which allowed analysis of complicated conversations within the homeschool culture. This cultural study included six women from three different families within the same community who had all been homeschooled from kindergarten through twelfth grade and whose families espoused conservative Christian values. Data was collected over two interview cycles including small group interviews and individual interviews. The results of the study challenge previous literature regarding perceived indoctrination and control as well as establishes a clear picture of this culture’s feminist viewpoint, but does reinforce a need for more research regarding explicit health and sexual education for conservative Christian homeschool families.

OCLC Number


Research Data and Supplementary Material