This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

The Impact of Parental Emotional Availability on the Academic Achievement of High School Students




Johnson, Elise

Type of Degree



School Psychology
Counselor Education
Counseling Psychology


The purpose of this study was to explore the relationship between students’ perceptions of parental emotional availability and academic achievement, specifically high school graduation status and grade point average (GPA). Differences in parental roles, gender and race of participants were also discussed. Participants included 75 females (33) and males (42) from one public charter high school in the Southeastern United States. They were all 18 years of age or older and of senior standing. Students had also taken the state high school graduation exam at least one time. Participants were asked to complete one instrument assessing their perceptions of parental emotional availability (LEAP). Additional demographic information was collected through self-report. Regression and correlational analyses were used to analyze the data. The current study found positive relationships between the variables of emotional availability and academic achievement; however, none of these relationships were determined statistically significant. Student gender and race were not found to be significant in moderating the relationship between perceptions of emotional availability and academic achievement. The current study revealed two noteworthy findings. Other forms of social involvement and support (i.e. extracurricular activities) were significantly related to academic achievement. In addition, participants’ perceptions of paternal emotional availability were more strongly correlated with academic achievement than that of maternal emotional availability.