The Influence of religion and education on current family size and fertility preference in Kenya
This dissertation is a work about the effects of education and religion on the current family size and the fertil ity preferences on the Kenyan women. It util izes the method of path analysis and multiple regression to test a series of models, both recursive and non-recursive, that purportedly explain the variation in the dependent variable of interest. The findings indicate that western re l igion, ethnic affi I iation and age are important determinants of educational attainment. Educational attainment is in turn an important determinant of age at First birth and does not affect significantly, and directly, the current Fertility levels of the Kenya women. It, however, affects directly the number of additional children wanted. The study also demonstrates the strong negative effect of current fertil ity levels on fertil ity preferences. It is however shown by the non-recursive model that educational attainment has a reciprocal relationship with age at first birth, and so has the number of Iiving chiIdren with additional children wanted. The non-recursive model is shown to be a better predictor of both the current fertil ity and fertility preferences, than the recursive model. The study concludes that relationships between fertil ity levels and the variables used here can be country specific, but also bear close resemblance to findings in the same area in western nations. Age at first birth, education and reIigion are seen as potentially practical variables for pol icy use, to influence both the current and expected future fertil ity levels in Kenya. They are, however, part of a rubric of factors relevant for changes in Kenya's fertility levels in whatever direction.
CitationDegree of Doctor of Philosophy
University of NairobiDepartment of Sociology
A Dissertation submitted to the Department of Sociology in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy