Date of Award

Spring 5-2016

Degree Type

Honors College Thesis



First Advisor

Abby McNeil

Advisor Department



This research is a retrospective study on adult children of alcoholics using a previous researcher’s, Dr. Ross, unpredictability scale. Family Unpredictability is defined as “a lack of consistency in family behaviors and regulatory systems,” (Ross and Hill, 2000). There is currently a lack of research related to parental alcoholism and its effect on family structure. The researcher hopes to gain insight on the relationship between parental alcoholism and family unpredictability. Previous research suggests children growing up with a caregiver who is an alcoholic experience a higher level of unpredictability in the home. Examples of this unpredictability are: a decreased amount of family meals, decreased or lack of discipline, and decreased amount of nurturance.

The goal is to find similarities in the family structures that can be related back to parental alcoholism. The reseracher will use an online survey to gain insight on childhood experiences of adult children of alcoholics. In order to determine significance results from the surveys were evaluated using a a multivariate analysis of variance, independent t test, and correlation studies.