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Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)


Educational Psychology

First Advisor

Linda Webster

First Committee Member

Rachelle Hackett

Second Committee Member

Dennis Brennan

Third Committee Member

Susan Tracy


This study examined pregnant/parenting adolescents and non-pregnant/non-parenting adolescents in relationship to preoccupied attachment, as measured by the Adult Attachment Projective, and compared the responses of the groups on self-reported behavior, as measured by the Behavior Assessment System for Children. The groups were compared in terms of self-reported social support, as measured by the Social Provisions Scale, and negative life events, as measured by the Life Events Checklist. The two status groups were also compared to determine whether the relationship between interpersonal relations and social provisions was moderated by pregnant/parenting status. Contrary to expectations, the proportion of preoccupied adolescents in the pregnant/parenting group was not significantly higher than the proportion of preoccupied adolescents in the non-pregnant/non-parenting group. The pregnant/parenting groups were found to be significantly higher in average level of self-reported self esteem and significantly lower in average level of self-reported social stress than the non-pregnant/non-k parenting groups, not in the direction predicted. The pregnant/parenting group was significantly higher in average level of social provisions. No significant differences were found between the two status groups average number of reported negative life events, average level of sense of inadequacy, or average level of interpersonal relations. A correlation was found between interpersonal relations and social provisions separately for each status group. Moreover, the relationship was not moderated by pregnant/parenting status (i.e. the correlations were not significantly different). Additional analyses were performed in an effort to control for the two main reasons these adolescents reported for enrolling (needing more credits or expulsion from their former school) in the alternative high schools where the data were collected because a marginally significant associated was found between reason and the pregnant/parenting status. Results determined that the average level of social stress remained significantly different between the two pregnant/parenting status groups. The average level of self-esteem and the average social provisions were no longer were significantly different. Average level of sense of inadequacy and average number of negative events remained non significant between the two pregnant/parenting status groups. Possible explanations for these findings, implications for theory, interventions, and future directions for research are discussed.





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