SEX ROLE IDENTIFICATION, NURTURANCE, BIRTH ORDER AND WOMEN'S EMPLOYMENT IN NONTRADITIONAL CAREERS

SYLVIA H EPSTEIN, Fordham University

Abstract

The purpose of the present study was to ascertain whether antecedent selected variables could be used to differentiate nontraditional and traditional employment of women. Sex role identification, degrees of nurturance, and birth order position were examined to test differences between means of the nontraditional and traditional groups. Differences in sex role identification and nurturance for women classified by birth order position and nontraditional/traditional careers were studied.^ Subjects for this study were 60 women employed in nontraditional careers and 57 women employed in traditional careers. The 117 women were from a medical center population stratified according to ethnic background, age, hours of employment, and level of education.^ Sex role identification was measured by the Identification Scale (IS) which consisted of two scales. The first scale, the Adjective Check List required subjects to check adjectives that described themselves. The other scale was the Parental Description Survey. The scores of both measures were combined to arrive at a score which indicated the sex with which each individual identified. Nurturance was measured on the Nurturance Scale of the Personality Research Form (PRF-E). The subjects had to respond to 16 items requiring a true or false answer. Birth order was obtained from subjects completing the Personal Data Questionnaire.^ The questionnaires were administered in random order to the subjects during their hours of employment by the investigator. Two separate 2 x 2 analyses of variance (ANOVA's) were performed to test differences between the means of nontraditional and traditional groups of career women.^ There were no main effects, or interaction with regard to career choice and birth order on identification. The null hypothesis of no significant mean differences between women employed in nontraditional and traditional careers was retained. There were main effects with regard to career choice on nurturance. The null hypothesis of no significant mean differences between women employed in nontraditional and traditional careers in regard to nurturance was rejected. Women in the nontraditional career group were less nurturant than women in the traditional career group. There were no main effects with regard to birth order groups on nurturance. There was no interaction with regard to career choice and birth order on nurturance. The null hypothesis of no significant interaction between birth order and career choice was retained.^ The results of the investigation suggest that the devaluing of nurturance tends to accompany a rise in career aspirations among women. The impact of nurturance and socialization of women has not been adequately investigated as they relate to career choice. Future researchers might explore the relative importance of nurturance and ways to assess its effects on traditional sex role socialization. This may lead to changes within our socializing agents and encourage the expansion of broader sex role options for women. ^

Subject Area

Educational psychology

Recommended Citation

EPSTEIN, SYLVIA H, "SEX ROLE IDENTIFICATION, NURTURANCE, BIRTH ORDER AND WOMEN'S EMPLOYMENT IN NONTRADITIONAL CAREERS" (1981). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI8119770.
https://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI8119770

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