The relationship of self concept and other variables to the work value orientation of black females enrolled in inner city vocational schools
Yates, Sandra Elizabeth Grady
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The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship of career choice, self concept, and grade level to the work value orientation of black females. More specifically, the study tested the extent to which the relationship among these variables could be shown to exist among a population of females enrolled in inner city vocational schools. An extensive review of the literature indicated the possibility of determining potential satisfaction of students in specific vocational areas by analyzing some of the basic internal characteristics of the individual while he or she is still in the school environment. In addition, the literature revealed that if vocational educators, in particular, are aware of certain basic characteristics about youth, it is likely that the youth could be helped to become better prepared for the world of work in terms of the personal meaning and value that work is capable of bringing to their lives. Further, it was found that many of the studies which have been conducted have been done so from a theoretical basis using a specific segment of the population--white middle class males. Research findings therefore, have indicated conflicting views relative to basic characteristics of other groups, i.e., their self concepts, their work value orientations, their satisfaction with work. Of particular interest have been black females who often experience both sex and race discrimination and who face a double disadvantage in the career choice process. Based on the literature review, this study was initiated to compare samples of black females in three traditionally female vocational areas and at three grade levels by using their mean scores on Part II of the Meaning and Value of Work Scale and the total positive score of the Tennessee Self Concept Scale. The population consisted of black females enrolled in Health Occupations, Occupational Home Economics, and Business and Office Education in the Career Development Centers of the District of Columbia Public Schools. Two hundred fifty nine subjects participated in the study. Null hypotheses were formulated to determine the relationships between the one dependent variable (work value orientation) and the three independent variables (career choice, self concept, and grade level). A factorial analysis of variance (ANOVA) procedure was utilized to analyze the data; level of significance was set at .05. Where there were significant F values obtained by the ANOVA procedure, the Newman-Keuls post hoc test was used to determine which differences contributed to the significance. The results of the study revealed that black females enrolled in inner city vocational schools do not clearly indicate tendencies toward either an extrinsic or intrinsic work value orientation. However, there were individual students who distinctly indicated tendencies toward either extreme of the continuum. In addition, the self concepts of the students were found to be below the norm for the instrument used. However, using the norm of the sample group, it was found that their self concepts fell within an average range. Differences were found in the female's work value orientation on career choice, self concept, and grade level. The post hoc test revealed specific differences in work value orientation of females in home economics, indicating their tendencies toward a more extrinsic work value orientation than the other two groups. Further, the test revealed that females with high self concepts and those in grade 12 tended to differ significantly in terms of work value orientation from the others. These females indicated tendencies toward an intrinsic work value orientation. Results of the interaction of career choice by grade level, grade level by self concept, and career choice by grade level by self concept failed to reject the null hypotheses. However, the test of the interaction of career choice and self concept did result in the rejection of null hypothesis.
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