Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design


Human Nutrition and Foods

Committee Chair

Carol A. Markstrom.


The intent of this study was to examine parental attitudes toward parenting and parenting styles before and after participation in a rural parent education program. The parental attitudes toward parenting were measured by the Parental Attitude Research Instrument (PARI). The three parenting styles; authoritarian, authoritative, and permissive, were measured by the Parenting Style Dimension (PSD). The participants in this study were six mothers of children who attended either the Starting Points Center Happy School or who visited the Food Pantry at Scott's Run Settlement House in Morgantown, West Virginia.;Cronbach's alphas were run on all measures with high reliability found on all except the program content measure. Cronbach's alpha for the attitudes reflecting authoritarianism and warmth ranged from .76 to .79. Cronbach's alphas for the three styles of parenting from the Parental Styles and Dimensions (PSD) ranged from .79 to .92. The Cronbach's alpha for the program content measure was .43.;An alpha level of .05 was used in all statistical analysis. According to the results of the paired-sampled t-tests, there were no significant pre-to-posttest changes on the measures. The hypotheses were not supported. The mean scores did decrease slightly for the attitudes reflecting authoritarianism from 29.33 to 28.33 (5.05 to 2.42). There were also some differences in the mean scores for the authoritarian parenting style from 39.17 to 35.33 (7.14 to 2.42).;None of the hypothesis were proven as result of the smaller sample size and short program length. It is suggested that more research needs to be done with a larger sample and longer parent education program.