Title

Divorced Mothers and Higher Education in Utah

Keywords

divorce, role conflict, single parenthood, socioeconomic status

Abstract

Drawing on human capital theory and role strain theory, we analyzed survey responses from 133 divorced mothers in Utah and in-depth interviews with a subsample of mothers to examine investment in higher education. In models predictive of postdivorce college degree attainment, having a college educated parent was the strongest predictor of receiving a college degree. Computer skills and student loans were also associated with completing college. In modeling the relationship between college degree (associate or bachelor) and employment income, only completion of a 4-year degree was predictive of increased future income. Drawing from both survey data and in-depth interviews, we found that increased income, personal improvement, and career advancement were the primary reasons given for pursuing higher education. In contrast, the role strain from fulfilling multiple roles as a single parent and the need for career counseling were the primary barriers to investing in higher education.

Original Publication Citation

Forste, Renata, & Wade C. Jacobsen. 2013. “Divorced Mothers and Higher Education in Utah.” Marriage & Family Review, 49(4):330-348

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date

2013-04-09

Publisher

Marriage & Family Review

Language

English

College

Family, Home, and Social Sciences

Department

Sociology

University Standing at Time of Publication

Full Professor

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