The full text of this item is not available at this time because the student has placed this item under an embargo for a period of time. The Libraries are not authorized to provide a copy of this work during the embargo period, even for Texas A&M users with NetID.
Personal and Environmental Variables That Hinder or Foster College Aspirations among Latina/o High School Students
MetadataShow full item record
This study used mixed methods to examine personal and contextual variables that hinder or foster college aspirations in Latina/o high school students. The Social Cognitive Career Theory (SCCT) served as a framework to explain and predict the interaction between socio-cognitive variables, contextual influences (i.e., SES and parents’ education level), and personal characteristics (i.e., self-efficacy and outcome expectations) in career-related aspirations. 247 Latina/o high school students in Southern California completed a survey that measured: self-efficacy, outcome expectations, supports, and barriers about college aspirations. 21 students participated in four focus groups and described the factors that most affected their college aspirations. The quantitative findings indicated that contextual factors were better predictors of college aspirations than personal factors. The biggest negative predictor was barriers, while academic performance was a positive predictor of college aspirations. Contextual and personal variables jointly accounted for 5.3% of the variation in college aspirations. In addition, supports were the biggest predictor of personal factors. Supports, barriers, SES, and parental education accounted for 37% of the variation in self-efficacy. Furthermore, supports, barriers, SES, parental education and self-efficacy accounted for 51% of the variation in outcome expectations. Additionally, personal and contextual variables were moderated by student gender and immigrant generation’s types. For instance, environmental conditions affected the college aspirations of males and first generation immigrants more than the college aspirations of females and older generations. The qualitative approach found that parents, teachers, and friends were either a source of support or an obstacle to going to college. The most common barriers were: the lack of financial resources, family responsibilities, the lack of teachers’ support, peer pressure, and systematic discrimination. The most valuable resources were: support from their parents, siblings, relatives and teachers. Latino families also provided encouragement, advice, economic support, and a sense of pride concerning the students’ achievements. Overall, these findings were consistent with previous research on barriers that Latina/o students face in the path of going to college as well as the types of supports they need to achieve their college aspirations. The implications of these findings for social cognitive career theory, practice, policy, and future research were discussed.
Latina high school students
Latino high school students
social cognitive career theory
Manzano Sánchez, Harold (2016). Personal and Environmental Variables That Hinder or Foster College Aspirations among Latina/o High School Students. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from