Parental punitive scale for the Kikuyu rural adolescents
Guchu, Anne W
MetadataShow full item record
A Parental Punitive Scale for Kikuyu, Rural Adolesoents. This study was designed in order to construct ''A Parental Punitive Soale" for Kikuyu, rulral adolesoents. The methodused in designing and validating this soale was based on a study by Epstein and Komorita (1965). The trial study oonsisted of pupils in standards 5 and 7 in rural primary sohools and whenit was deoided that the questionnaires were to be given in English and it wa.sfound that the. pupils in standards 5 and 7 oould not handle the questionnaires in English, it was agreed that in the pilot study, pupils in FormsI and II were to be used. Ndumberi and Uthiru seoondary sohools were used because of the following reasons: a) It was felt that travelling distanoes would be minimized sinoe both of these schools were very near Nairobi. b) Both sohools were day seoondary sohools. This was a great advantage in this studyt sinoe it was felt that only pupils wholive at homewith adults whodisoipline them should be included in the pilot study. Since in the review of literature it was obvious that disoipline techniques depend on either tribal or cultural background, it was deoided that only Kikuyu adolescents should be used in the pilot- study in order to" oontrol variation due to tribal. background of the sample. Sinoe the majority of the pupils in Ndumberi and Uthiru secondary schools were Kikuyu, it was easy to get the required number of Kikuyu adolescents. d) Both schools were also chosen because they were located in rural areas. It was felt that a rural community should be used in this study beoause unlike the urban community, the rural oommunity tends to be more homogeneous than the urban community (Myer, 1971). After the selection of schools, pupils were then randomly selected within the sohools. The first stage of this study conoerned itself with designing and analysing the trial and pilot studies in order to:- a) Gain experienoe in conducting this type of study. b) Iron out administrative difficulties in conducting this study. Develop a reliable and reproducible instrument e.g. questionnaires for use in the final study. The following trial study result was oonsidered vital in the choioe of a design for the pilot study:- Instead of standards 5 and 7 supjects, forms I and II subjects who could handle the questionnaires in English should be used. The pilot study oonsisted of four minor studies each of which had its own questionnaire and subjects consisted of twenty Kikuyu, rural, day secondary school adolescent s in forms I and II. In questionnaire I,version At of the first minor study, the subjects were required to give a variety of discipline techniques whichwouldbe administered to themby their mothers and fathers for behaving in a mannersimilar to that portrayed in the given twelve stories (appendix A). In questionnaire II, of the second minor studyt the subjects were required to rate the severity of the given discipline techniques (appendix C). The discipline techniques given in questionnaire II were those obtained from the first minor study. Questionnaire III, of the third minor study assessed the subjects' parental punitiveness towards aggression. Questionnaire IV, of the fourth minor study assessed the subjects' prejudice and aggression. The reliability of the scale was calculated using Kuder- Richardson's formula 20 and its results showedthat the scale had an acceptable reliability. Construct validity wasused in the validation of the . scale and the' theoretical construct used in the validation of this scale was based on the hypothesis that: There was a r6lationship between'parental punitiveness for aggression and children's prejudice and aggression. This relationship was suggested by the "Scapegoat" hypothesis, derived fromboth psychoanalytic and social-learning theorists (Allport, 1954; Young,1957). The 'Scapegoat hypothesis states that severe punishment for aggression mayincrease rather than inhibit the instigation to aggress. Since the child has learned to anticipate punishmentfor aggression, hostile impulses will be displaced from the original source of frustration to membersof out-groups. Consequentlychildren whoare often harshly treated, severely punished and often criticised are moreaggressive and more prejudiced than those whoare treated otherwise (Allport, 1965; Young,1957). A chi-square test wasused in caloulating the validity of the scale. Thevalue of the observed X was not statistically significant, but it wasthought that the results wouldhave been morereliable if the sample size was morethan twenty subjects.l The following pilot study results were cahsidered vital in the choice of a design for the final study:- There were only twenty subjects in the first, second.and third and fourth ,'minorstudies in this study. a) The sample size in each of the minor studies should be increased to one hundred subjects in order to produce more reliable results especially in the validation of the scale in the fourth minor study. b) Questionnaires I and III should each be divided into two parts in order to rule out the possibility of subjects giving duplicate answers for 'father' and 'mother' and for Persons A and B in questionnaires I and III respectively. Questionnaires IA and IB and questionnaires IlIA and IIIB were consequently constructed for use in the final study (appendices B and H) The meanings of the three pairs of words, fair/unfair, right/wrong and good/bad used in questionnaire II (appendix C) should be clearly. explained to the subjects. d) Instead of the commonouns 'father' and 'mother' used in questionnaire III, the terms Person A and Person B should be used in questionnaires IlIA and IIIB" to represent any two persons Whooften discipline the subjects whenthey do something wrong. Using the above modifications the following final study questionnaires ,were constructed:- Questionnaires IA and IB, version B, for the first minor (vi) study (appendix B). Questionnaire II t for the second minor study (appendix D). Questionnaires IlIA and 11113for the third minor study (appendix H). Questionnaire IV, for the fourth minor study (appendix I) was the sameas that used in the pilot study. The content of all the above questionnaires was the sameas that described in the pilot study (pages 35-38). In questionnaire IAt the subjects were required to give responses for 'father' and for mother in questionnaire lB. Whenan analysis of subjects responses in these two questionnaires was done, twenty-six discipline techniques were obtained. The discipline technique, 'Beat me', was not only mentionedmore frequently than all the other discipline techniques but it was also the 'father' whowas said to beat morefrequently than the 'mother' and the boys were morefrequently beaten than the girls. In questionnaire II, the subjects were required to rate the severity of the twenty-six discipline techniques obtained in the first minor study. Ananalysis of the subjects responses showedthat they considered the verbal discipline techniques as less severe ,than the pysical discipline techniques. There were, howevertwo exceptions the discipline jechniques, 'Stop me from going to school and 'Refuse to pay my school fees though not entirely physioal were considered to be the most severe. The reason for this oould be that the subjects in this study considered formal education as the most important asset in their lives and henoe viewed deprivation of this asset as being very severe. In questionnaires IlIA and IIIB, the punitive soores for Persons A and B were oalculated for eaoh of the subjeots in the sample. This study found no statistically signifioant differenoe in punitiveness between girls and boys but the differenoe in punitiveness between Persons A and B was found to be statistioally significant. Person A who l8.S represented by 'father' was found to be more punitive than Person B, represented by mother. The following oonclusions were reached in this study that:- a) The 'father' was more punitive than the 'mother'. b) The 'father' punished boys more often than did the mother. This study also found that there was a statistically significant difference in prejudice and aggression between girls and boys so that girls were more prejudiced and more aggressive tlianboys. According to tne findings of this study, birth-order of child and formal education of parents had no statistically significant effect on 'Parental' punitiveness. The data in this study was based only on adolescent reports therefore no conclusive remarks could be madeon Kikuyu 'parental' discipline but it was hoped that another study could be done and that both adolescents and their 'parents' should be used in order to make conclusive remarks on Kikuyu 'parental' discipline.