Term of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (restricted to Georgia Southern)


Department of Sociology and Anthropology

Committee Chair

W. Jay Strickland

Committee Member 1

Roger G. Branch

Committee Member 2

Jie Zhang


This is an exploratory study examining the relationship between parenting styles and quality of parent-child relationships as reported by Catholic adolescents. The work of Baumrind (1967) and her typology of authoritative, authoritarian, and permissive parenting styles provide the foundation of this research. Questionnaire data were collected from 358 adolescents from five Catholic churches in Georgia. About half of the parents were reported to have a mixed style of parenting, while one-third were described as authoritative. Approximately ten percent were reported to be authoritarian and one percent permissive. Parental authoritativeness was negatively related to the child's age, while permissiveness was positively related to child's age. Parental authoritativeness was positively related to quality of the parent-child relationship. There was no relationship found between parenting style and father-child relationship. Authoritativeness was positively related to quality of the mother-child relationship. Factors affecting parenting styles were also examined, as were effects of parenting styles on adolescent's religious attitude. Adolescent's religious attitude was found to be more positive when parents were more authoritative and less positive when parents were permissive.


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