Having Our Say: High Achieving African American Male College Graduates Speak about Parental Involvement and Parenting Style

Lynn Cheryl Lanier Odom, University of Southern Mississippi


This study examined the patterns of parental involvement and parenting styles of a particular sample of academically successful African American males who attended and graduated from historically Black colleges or universities More specifically, investigated was the presence of any relationships between parental involvement, parenting styles, grade point average, family structure, and parent(s) educational level. An online self-report instrument was administered to 36 participants. Information gathered focused on how the graduates viewed their parents' child-rearing or parenting style during their educational experiences from kindergarten to the 12th grade. Three students agreed to participate in interviews designed to provide more information regarding their perceptions of their academic success. Trends found in the data indicated that parents were involved every step of the way by holding their son(s) accountable, instilling the value of hard work, mandating the obeying of rules, encouraging curiosity, fostering a rich learning environment, and requiring academic excellence.