Based on Culture and Traditions, How Parental Pressure Affects the Academic Attitude of Asian Children in the United States: Analyzing the Gender Differences Open Access

Wang, Cherie (Spring 2021)

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This thesis aims to understand and evaluate, among Asian Americans, the impact of parental pressure on their children’s academic attitudes and behavior, as well as how that impact varies across genders. This thesis relies upon a particular type of qualitative research—the literature review design. By specifying inclusion and exclusion criteria, the literature review settled upon twenty-one sources for review. These sources included peer-reviewed articles, chapters, master’s theses, doctoral dissertations, and an editorial. The data analysis involved thematic analysis of those sources, with  social cognitive career theory (SCCT) used to guide the subsequent discussion. The results reveal that, according to previous studies, Asian American parents use an authoritarian parenting style, with notable gendered pattens also revealed. For example, Asian American mothers play a more significant role in their children’s development than do Asian American fathers. Meanwhile, the results of the involvement vary between boys and girls. Notably, Asian American girls are more affected by parental pressure than are boys. For instance, girls are concerned with good grades, while boys worry about getting a job and residence after graduation. Nonetheless, previous research shows that both genders are significantly affected by parental pressure through stress and depression. Some scholars emphasize that Confucian beliefs and values undergird both this parental pressure and the acceptance of it by Asian American children. The literature review also reveals inconsistent findings regarding parental pressure on Asian Americans. Further research is required to address this inconsistency. Also, Asian Americans are presently using support from institutions and programs that have been developed to promote psychological wellbeing. Future research should be conducted on evaluating this and its impact on independence and autonomy in the decision-making process of Asian American students. 

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction                                                                                                                                        3

1.1 Background                                                                                                                                                                  3

1.2 Problem Statement                                                                                                                                                    5

1.3 Research Purpose and Objectives                                                                                                                           7

1.4 Research Contribution                                                                                                                                               7

1.5 Overview of the Research                                                                                                                                          8

Chapter II: Literature Review                                                                                                                                          9

2.1 Definition of Terms                                                                                                                                                     9

2.1.1 Parental Pressure                                                                                                                                                     9

2.1.2 Attitude                                                                                                                                                                     10

2.1.3 Behavior                                                                                                                                                                    10

2.1.4 Gender variation                                                                                                                                                      11

2.2 Theoretical Framework                                                                                                                                              11

2.3 Asian American Parents’ Behavior:  From Tradition and Culture                                                                 12

2.3.1 Parental Pressure in Education and Academic Achievement: Tradition and Culture               14

2.3.2 Impact of Asian Parental’s Pressure on Their Children’s Academic Achievement                    16

2.4 Parental Pressure and Its Impacts on Children’s Academics: Gender Differences                            18

2.5 Current Research                                                                                                                                                         20

Chapter IV: Results                                                                                                                                                            25

4.1 Search Findings                                                                                                                                                            25

4.2 Summary of the Sources                                                                                                                                             30

Chapter V: Discussion                                                                                                                                                        31

5.1 Perception of Asian American Parents About the Children Education                                                         31

5.1.1 Parental Pressure in Asian Culture                                                                                                                       32

5.2 Relationship Between Parental Pressure of the Asian American Parents and the Academic Attitude      34

5.2.1 Role of Culture in Educational Efforts                                                                                                                  35

5.3 Gender Variation in Parental Pressure and Expectation on the Child’s Attainment                        36

5.3.1 Gender Differences in the Effect of Parental Pressure on Gender                                                        37

5.4 Impacts of Parental Pressure on the Asian Americans Academics                                                                39

Chapter VI: Conclusion, Limitations, and Future Research                                                                                       42

6.1 Summary and Achievement of the Objectives                                                                                                        42

6.2 Study Limitations                                                                                                                                                          43

6.3 Future Research and Implications                                                                                                                             43

References                                                                                                                                                                             45

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