Journal of Youth and Adolescence

, Volume 37, Issue 8, pp 997–1008 | Cite as

African American Adolescents’ Future Education Orientation: Associations with Self-efficacy, Ethnic Identity, and Perceived Parental Support

  • Jennifer L. KerpelmanEmail author
  • Suna Eryigit
  • Carolyn J. Stephens
Empirical Research


The current study, using data from 374 African American students (59.4% female) in grades 7–12 attending a rural, southern county public school, addressed associations of self-efficacy, ethnic identity and parental support with “future education orientation.” Both gender and current level of achievement distinguished adolescents with differing levels of future education orientation. The strongest predictors of future education orientation were self-efficacy, ethnic identity and maternal support. Gender did not moderate these associations. Implications for future research include the need to conduct longitudinal studies and research that integrates quantitative and qualitative methods to elucidate further the nature and importance of future education orientation for African American youth. Also needed are policies and programs that facilitate school bonding and academic performance, as are efforts that focus specifically on enhancing the future education orientation and academic success of African American male adolescents.


Future education orientation Ethnic identity Self-efficacy Parental support African American adolescents 



The preparation of this paper was made possible, in part, by a grant from the United States Department of Agriculture (Rural Development Grant (62.0); CSREES Agreement No. 00-35401-9256) to the first author.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jennifer L. Kerpelman
    • 1
    Email author
  • Suna Eryigit
    • 1
  • Carolyn J. Stephens
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Human Development and Family StudiesAuburn UniversityAuburnUSA

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