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Family Communication: Literature Review (Paper 2)

Rationale

Parents develop communication skills of their children, and the influence created by family members has a long-term effect on the socialization of a junior’s expertise and personality (Stracher, 2015). Support or pressure created by parents concerning the interests of their children dictates the children’s socialization and communication performance. This literature review is aimed at answering questions set by the thesis statement of this research study: namely, whether parents influence the communication and socialization skills of their children through family activities and communication forms.

Theoretical Framework

This study uses the results of earlier surveys to exhaustively analyze the variables of the research. The experiment applies both self-determination and expectancy-valued theory to analyze data. Self-determination theory acknowledges that communication is a person-oriented skill. At the same time, the expectancy-valued theory correlates communication skills with the control of the societal and ethical expectations of the factors surrounding an individual.

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Research Independent and Dependent Variable

Family communication is the independent variable of this study, while the impact of family communication to children is a dependent variable. The independent variable will be measured by reviewing the family communication strategies that are used by parents to address children and other family members. The impact of the communication strategies will help in examining the way these tools impact the children in different families. Additionally, the dependent variable will be measured by the stability of the children in their communication and social life activities. Children that will be analyzed in the context of the research will be of 9 and 11 years. One of their parents will be involved in the experiment as well in order to maintain consistency in the studied population.

Literature Review

This paper analyses the past studies and evaluates the findings and parameters of the researchers concerning the influence of family communication on children. A comprehensive review of scholarly research studies will offer the information needed to fill in the gaps in family communication study. This literature review analysis will help fill in the identified gaps and reduce the limitations in earlier studies. The perspectives of both parents and children from diverse families will be explored. The literature review study will verify the hypotheses of this research.

According to a survey on the transmission of information in a family, children are likely to speak and imitate the practices of their parents and the elders around them (Medved et. al., 2006). The study stated that children’s communication strategies and skills are based on the efforts of their parents in molding them. Parents are the teachers to their children (Kellas, 2010). Innocent young children barely understand the world but the world realities are translated to them by parents. Eventually, parents are the closest people children associate with most in their tender age. Therefore, the way a parent teaches their children to understand issues and communicate is the way they grow up. The individuals around young people will help them adapt to the ways of living per cultural ethics and morals. Most of the skills and interests of a young child are introduced to them by the family members for without them they would barely understand their existence of those skills (Kellas, 2010). For example, parents or other elders around to children introduce the interests of dancing or acting to a child. Thus, parents that encourage their children to value the skills give support to the children’s development (McCandless, 1969). As a result, the mentored children develop a high value of the skills introduced to them. These tools help them socialize with the community and become good communicators (McCandless, 1969).

This study will be based on the expectancy-valued theory that acknowledges that family influences the communication skills of children. This theory affirms that the way children are molded by their parents is the way they live in most of their lives. Therefore, the beliefs and habits that are instilled in the offspring become part of their life (Starcher, 2015). Additionally, Kanters, Bocarro, and Casper (2008) have conducted research on the supportive and pressured relationship between parents and children. This study emphasized the effects created by the nature of the reaction of parents to the interests of their children. For example, children that love sports may receive support or rebellion from their family members. The diversity is created by the beliefs and perceptions of the family members or parents. For instance, a parent explained that sports are a waste of time. Other parents perceived sports as important for health and also an opportunity to develop a career. In this case, both parents would be right, but the way a child utilizes this belief should be a determinant of the essence of the child’s interest.

The claims of these scholars have been supported by another study that shows that parents are the role models for their children (Moschis & Moore, 1979). Therefore, children should not receive rejection without further analysis of their interests. Generalizations of the aspects that tag with their interest are most likely to demoralize the young generation from pursuing new interests in life (Kohlerg, 1985). Good communication with children on specific issues has been encouraged in a family setup in order to ensure all the parties’ interests’ are addressed (Kellas, 2010). For example, a child who aspires to be a footballer may miss the chance to pursue their dreams due to parents’ discouragement based on the perception that sports are a waste of time.

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Moreover, a family is an institution that has values and principles observed that create a culture (Nullarly & Bernstein, 1994). Therefore, a family should teach and guide children in cultural practices and ethics to ensure the survival of the community’s morale (Kohlerg, 1969). The elder generation is responsible for passing information to the younger one and encouraging them in practicing moral standards. In these practices, the community contributes to the social development and establishment of the children in the families around them (Kellas, 2010). Thus, the application of self-determination theory is observed in this process. The study will interrelate with earlier research that acknowledges the influence of family communication on the attitude of the young population in the families.

Comparing the research arguments grants a clear understanding of differences in the opinion of whether family communication has an effect on adolescents’ communication or not. Hence, a different self-determination theory will be used to review this aspect. According to this theoretical approach, an individual is likely to adopt the traits that he or she finds attractive and feels comfortable with them (Kellas, 2010). The theory explains that the social establishment of a person is designed by the choices of practices and cultural norms practiced by a person (McCandless, 1969). Therefore, the expertise in the communication of a child is linked to their practice in learning to improve their skills. For example, a child with a strong ability to address the public is attributed to his or her practice in dealing with the public often and building the relevant skills in the sphere. On the contrary, youths who do not participate in social activities that are of interest to them may never be good at them. As per the cliche, practice brings expertise: those youths who are not motivated by the families are inferior to those that have support (McCandless, 1969).

Additionally, the nature of the occupation and social activities that a child is involved in has an effect on his or her communication skills. To illustrate, a girl who is raised on the grounds of taking care of her younger siblings is most likely to develop leadership skills in the process. In the future, she will be more stable and responsible in her endeavors. The girl adapts to the responsibilities of taking charge and communicating well in order to create a favorable environment for all people in her areas of concern. As a result, with the stability gained in her social responsibilities at her young age, the girl will shape her confidence in acting according to her desires (Moschis, 1985). The responsibilities assigned to the young people create value and meaning in the social establishment of the child in her or his community. However, a difference may be seen in a child who is brought up in a different environment where she or he is not supported by the family or the people around her. For example, a girl child who is bullied by her older siblings is likely to grow up with fear and feeling of oppression. Thus, the high chances exist that the child will be used to live in accordance with others’ wishes and not her own. As a result, the child may develop shyness and fear to express their personal opinions and interest. These factors may trigger the lack of courage and poor communication skills to a girl or a boy that may be seen in the way they relate to people in the greater part of further life.

However, some scholars do not attribute any influence of the parents and family communication on the shaping of a child’s communication. To illustrate, Moschis and Moore (1979) have used the self-determinant theory to show that the influence of a family does not maintain the stability of an individual. These scholars have linked self-social establishment to the intelligence of an individual. According to the study, the intelligence quotient of a person is the key determinant of the ability and skills of communication of a person. In this respect, family communication has no effect on a particular social establishment (Moschis & Moore, 1979). This study has a strong base on the intelligence quotient of different individuals. However, it is impossible for an individual’s knowledge to help them learn better communication skills without the influence of the people around them. This fact has been evidenced by that most of the children learn their mother’s language first when learning to speak (Moschis & Moore, 1979). It follows that every adolescent or young child is helped by his or her family to learn the native language better. As a result, they imitate the people around them who are good at communication in order to attain the best communication expertise.

Moreover, the expectancy-valued theory has been used by different researchers to explain the impact of family communication. This theory ensures that communication skills and the ability of the young population in society are shaped by the expertise of the children to meet the expectations of society (Moschis, 1985). A child’s ability to meet the standards of communication level required at school, a particular role, or career is what shapes their skills. This theory is expounded on the details of parent communication being the guide to the much a child can achieve or should attain. Parents who emphasize good communication, socialization and activeness of their children boost the development and growth of their children. For example, youths who are brought up mingling with a diverse population of people have a better chance of learning a broad range of issues unlike those who do not. Therefore, parents that encourage their children to interact with people of different regions, cultures, origins, and regions help them diversify their communication skills. These children with diversified experience in interacting with various people learn more languages than those that are limited in socializing. Additionally, parents that encourage and support their children to seek more information or sharpen their communication skills have more stable children than those who do not follow this perspective.

Moreover, every family has its right morals and rules that guide the behavior of the members. The family rules can be written or unwritten. The rules have a prime implication of the beliefs and customs of the family members. Therefore, children grow to observe the rules and expectations set for the family and focus on staying true to them. Contrasting the beliefs and interests of the family is termed as disrespect and crime (McCandless, 1969). The rules of a family control the communication and behavior of the people, especially children. In this regard, the rules will impose a direct effect on how the children in each family associate with others in accordance with their beliefs as a family (McCandles, 1969). For instance, an African girl may be restricted by the family beliefs to associate with Hindus in fear that she might offend her family interest if the family does not allow intermarriage. Thus, a girl may feel uncomfortable to interact with other tribes for fear of being rejected or punished by her family members. However, intertribal interactions may not necessarily mean that children are dating, thus it should not be banned among young generations.

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According to this theory, society and the environment surrounding an individual have control over the expectations of his or her communication ability. In contrast to the self-determinant theory, the aforementioned theoretical approach recognizes the contribution of family communication to the development of youth’s communication strategies and skills (Moschis & Moore, 1979). Therefore, this study supports family communication in guiding young individuals in achieving a better communication toolkit. However, the shortcomings of the study revolve around the free will of individuals to accept or deny the community ethics and norms. Human beings are not limited in their decision-making process on what should be part of their lives (Kellas, 2010). At the same time, nobody can adopt the negative attributes of communication in their lives. Hence, if the community has full control over the communication ability and skills of their people, there would be no people with poor skills. A community would advocate for only good skills, and that would have created uniformity among all people in the community (Nunnaly & Bernstein, 1994). The chances are that some individuals in society do not acknowledge the cultural practices and do not observe them, but still emerge to be good at communication. Therefore, this theory may be wrong to tag community skills to control social expectations. As a result, the study left a gap in the analysis of the family influence on the communication of children with a family. According to Nunnally and Bernstein (1994), some earlier studies have disclaimed and others agreed that family communication has an impact on the attitude and communication to the young ones. Nonetheless, to ensure that these findings are valid, an independent research experiment will be conducted for this study.

Experimental Design Overview

The experiment will study families with children between the age of 9-11 years and one of their parents. The aim of the study will be to measure the effect of parental support or lack of support for their children in sports. The study’s purpose will be to ascertain the similarity or difference of the current results from that of previous studies.

Hypotheses

Based on the survey of the above literature review, the hypotheses tested in this study will be:

1. Parental communication and support have a significant effect on the attitude of young children.

2. Children with parental support and motivation perform better in their endeavors than those from unsupportive families.

3. Children from supportive families have a better attitude towards life.

Family Communication: Methodology (Paper 3)

Introduction

Despite the ample information from the literature review, an experiment on the parents’ support of their children in sports was done to gather and clarify the results of the literature review. In this chapter, a description of the tools that were used in the research study is analyzed. The independent variable of this study is family communication, while the impact of family communication to children is a dependent variable. The independent variable was measured by reviewing the family communication strategies used by parents to address the children and other members. The moral practices of children and responsibility were also evaluated in order to measure their responsibility in adopting parental advice or pressure effect. Therefore, the researcher requires a broad range of approaches to tackle the needed information and answer the research question of the study.

Design Statement

In the experiment, an evaluation of the data gained in the study and literature review was highly utilized to attain its credibility and validity of the research. Thus, the experiment used the post-test design in analyzing the results.

Participants

In this research, the participants included parents and children from families with positive and others with negative communication forms. The target population for this experiment was linked to children between the age of 9 to 11 years and their parents. The young participants were classified and selected by age, and one of their parents was involved in the survey. The participants were also from both a family with an active family communication system and those from families with no supportive communication. Several researchers were involved in the study to ensure more information was gathered within the set timelines of the research. In order to increase the population viability, the young population was selected from learning institutions in accordance with their age. The children from the learning centers comprised of good and poor performers in academic, sports, and socialization activities. The tutors and other institution officers that are closer to the students helped the researchers identify the diverse attributes of the adolescents. The use of a broad range of participants increased the efficacy of the results found in the research study (Abbort &Mckinney, 2012).

The participants were chosen based on demographics, as well as inclusion and exclusion criteria. Therefore, all of the participants were parents and children representing the target population regardless of their economic status, origin, gender, position or tenure (Akerlind, 2012). Additionally, only parents with children aged between 9-11 were interviewed. Notably, only one parent of each child was included in the survey. Moreover, those families without children or those that have children under or above the age of 9-11 years were excluded from the study. All the participants were issued with questionnaires to derive the needed information for the research. The observation tool was also used to survey on parental support and the reaction of children to their parents’ involvement and influence in the sports activity.

Procedures

In this study, the population was provided with the details and purpose of the survey. The prior preparation of the population ensured that they were more cooperative and responsive to the research question. On the other hand, the researchers had to review the significant aspects of the survey to make sure that they complied with the set requirements. The identified independent variable is family communication while the impact on the children’s communication is the dependent variable of the survey. The research question is: does unreceptive family communication differ significantly in the quantity and quality of its influence on children’s developmental and emotional stability, as compared to the motivational family communication? In order to find the answer to the above question, a strategic choice of methods and procedures were applied. The strategies used in the process aimed at the facilitation of the manipulation of the independent variable and the measurement of the dependent variable efficiently. As a result, the following procedural methods were applied in the execution of the research procedure.

The study used the literature review, interviews, and questionnaires to acquire the needed data for the experiment and the general survey. The secondary sources were analyzed thoroughly to explain the aspects that point out the relationship between family communication and its impact on children as discussed in the literature review on the topic. Concerning the experiment, direct interviews were conducted by the researchers. Additionally, the researchers used structured questionnaires to gather more information from the target population. The institutions that were involved are churches and schools that have a large population of children between 9 and 11 years. Additionally, other institutions with the target audience were included, such as refreshment sites.

The parents involved in the experiment were questioned on their view and perception of children involved in sports. Further, their contributions to the participation of the children in the activities were analyzed. The study questions aimed at identification if parents pressured or motivated their children to participate in sports. Moreover, parents were interviewed on the effects they make on their children. This aspect was based on the facts of whether they help to nurture the interests of their children or not. On the other hand, children were asked about their opinion regarding parental involvement in their sports activities. The children were expected to answer questions pertaining to how parents affect their participation in sports by saying if they are supportive or not. Moreover, a judgment on parental perception and reaction to their life’s attitude was spelled out in the survey. Through the comparison of the information obtained from the experiment, it was possible to identify and compare the weaknesses and strengths of family communication in each studied household.

Manipulation of the Independent Variable

The independent variable of the study is family communication. In every family, communication process, form, and strategy exist. However, the nature of the communication forms differed across households in the target population. Some families have supportive communication forms to their children while others do not (Moschis, 1985). The purpose of the research was to achieve efficacy in methods used and enable the researchers to derive accurate information on family communication from every sample subject selected. Therefore, the researcher was required to have a diverse range of methods to choose from and apply favorably to their respondents (Flowler, 2014).

The independent variable is evident in all the communities but can have either positive or negative effects (Flowrler, 2014). The positive family communication is motivating, while negative communication is pressuring to the social development and establishment of socialization of children (Moschis, 1985). Through the research questionnaires, data concerning different family set-ups were collected. Moreover, the data from the secondary sources were analyzed. The comprehensive information was used to describe all the possibilities and types of family communication in a community. The data obtained were used in discussing the independent variable of the study. Additionally, the research study required a reasonable and adequate time to increase its efficiency.

Every survey requires appropriate allocation of time to ensure that consistencies and inconsistencies of the variables are well identified (Arkalind, 2012). This study was undertaken in a period of 8 weeks. As many as possible individuals from institutions and households were surveyed to gather valid information. All the participants were interviewed separately to avoid duplication and generalization of the given response. Questionnaires were issued and answered by children between the age of 9-11 and one parents in the sample families.

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In week one, the strategic research questionnaires were structured, and the researchers were introduced to their role and the expectations of the study. In week two, strategic planning and organization of the required resources were done. In week three, the distribution of the questionnaires was done and the public educated on the conventional way to answer the question. In week four, the research survey continued with every researcher gathering more information. The study involved conducting direct interviews, filling in the questionnaires, and distributing another questionnaire that will be collected later. In weeks five and six, the same processes continued that were started in week four. At the same time, the collection of surveys left in previously visited places was done during this week. In week seven, the fieldwork was summarized. In week eight, analyzing, compiling and presentation of the data collected were done. A review of the literature report was also incorporated in the research procedure.

The experiment involved investigating the contribution of parents to the attitude of their children in sports. Therefore, parents answered questions based on their judgment on the indicated issue. Moreover, children were asked questions about the effects of their parents’ reactions to their interests in sports. Children’s performance in academics and their participation in sports were evaluated. Afterward, a single parent for all the students selected was issued with questionnaires. The population was characterized by other factors, such as different origin or ethnicity of the families, religion, economic status, to name a few.

Quantitative techniques and tools were applied to the experiment process. These tools will include observation checklist, structured, and semi-structured questionnaires and data collection forms were used (Sirivastava & Thomson, 2009). To ensure liable and quality data, the researcher, sought and reviewed the data of the reports from different families. The researchers further considered the various reports concerning the survey processes attained by the two supervisors to ensure the data given was valid. Additionally, the interviews on the phone with parents and students were conducted randomly to ascertain further the viability of the data presented by the field research officials and help gather more information. Quantitative packages were used where information from a quantitative approach had been used to assess rigorously, interpret, and present the issues in question. The analyzed data were then interpreted and presented using descriptions regarding similarities and deviations. Through the data obtained from parents and children, it was possible to identify a family with positive or negative communication.

Measurement of Dependent Variable

After the analysis of the positive and negative family communication, the impact of each child was examined. Further, these findings were used to measure the independent variable influence. A Likert scale chart was used to measure the effect of family communication to children’s performance in social activities. The Likert Chart is a scale of the levels of effect of reactions of the parents and the children’s judgment on family communication. The effect of each family communication was measured by compiling the collected data from the respondents. The responses of children to the questions in the questionnaire and the analysis of their activeness in the social activities were used to measure the effects of family communication on children. Moreover, the performance of different children from different family set-ups was also used to analyze the impact of communication on children for the same purpose.

The data collected from the field and literature review were well analyzed to enable the researcher to present the findings. Data analysis was weighed between the extents to which every aspect of a supportive family communication causes a difference to a child from a family against non-supportive family communication. Through the comparison of the data given by parents and their children, the researchers classified the different family communication approaches. Additionally, the impact on the children was evaluated and stated by the results of the study. The effect was presented in the description of how well children performed in the social, academic, and other livelihood activities that entail communication skills and expertise. The better a child is in the socializing, the more stable he or she is in their performance in academics, and expression of his or her interest is based on the better the family communication. However, if the chances are that the family communication process had little to do with the social development of the children, these results will also be shown in the study. The scale helped to demonstrate the direct relation of the children’s performance with the reaction of their parents. The expected results were a decline in a child’s performance for pressured families and a rise in a child’s performance in light of supportive families.

The effects of support or its lack were reflected directly in the performance of the child. For example, a boy from a supportive family was stable in his academics, socialization, and co-curriculum activities. However, withdraw of support concerning his interests in any of his interests showed a fall in his performance. Therefore, showing the right support through communication, in this case, caused a positive effect on the child’s performance. However, the change of attitude of parents and other members of the family towards the interest of the child would show a decline in performance. Thus, family communication affects the attitude and social activeness of children directly (Moschis, 1985).

However, another different scenario achieved in the measure of the impact showed that family communication does not affect children. This effect was evidenced by the results of the research showing that some children in families with supportive communication perform poorly in their social, academic, and communication activities. Moreover, some children from families with inadequate and unsupportive communication were good performers in their activities. Thus, family communication had no link to the performance of children and their performance in the case where family connection shows no direct or indirect effect on the performance of the respondents. The results meant that other factors affect the performance of each child’s performance. Such factors may include intelligence quotient and other self-determinant factors.

Therefore, a measurement of the impact created by family communication was presented to determine if the effect is directly or inversely related (Curry, Nermhard, & Bradley, 2009). A directly related effect was attained where a positive family communication system boosted the performance of a child. Moreover, a pressuring family communication demoralized and lowered the performance efficiency of children. A similar inverse measure was attained when there was no direct relation to the performance of the child to the nature of communication in his or her family. A non-supportive family connection gave the results of boosting the performance of the child. Moreover, under the same conditions, an improvement of another child’s performance was enhanced. In such an incident, it was evident that family communication does not affect the performance of children. Therefore, accurate analysis of the findings enabled the valid interpretation of the data. A proper definition of the parameters attained ensured that the similarities, disparities, and gaps in earlier studies in comparison with the current research were well addressed. Useful methodological tools, techniques, and strategies helped keep the research study viable and relevant (Zhang & Wildamuth, 2009).

For possible intervening, confounding, and moderating of the variables, the following aspects were applied. The questions that were employed in the study were easy to understand and direct. The purpose of making the questions clear was to avoid the ambiguity that may profoundly contribute to misunderstanding and unreliable data. The questionnaires were of two kinds: for the children and the parents. However, all the questionnaires had the options of a ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ answer, but with the chance for further explanation in case of a different finding. Moreover, the researchers had more questionnaires that guided them in interviewing the population as they interacted with them and conducted interviews. The questionnaires had eleven questions to avoid issues that will exhaust the respondents. Additionally, the extent to which the juniors adapted the lessons taught to them was measured based on their moral practices. The better behaved a child was, the more responsibility they showed and vice versa.

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Furthermore, to ensure that the survey was achievable and reasonably relevant, the techniques of analyzing, interpreting, and presenting approaches had to be well chosen. The data was compiled, and then the researcher analyzed and summarized it ensuring that the entire SMART attributes are observed. Therefore, the data should be Specific, Measurable, Accurate, Reliable, and Timely (Flowler, 2014). The researchers used a pilot study to help them strategically plan for the entire project adequately. The research employed direct interviewing in the greater part of the study. Therefore, there was direct contact between the interviewer and the interviewee. As a result, little misunderstanding and more clarification were experienced in the research procedure. The respondents asked for clarification on any of the questions they had concerning the study or the questionnaires since they had direct contact with the researcher. Moreover, in this way, it was possible to convince the respondents to be cooperative in participating in the study. Further, the respondents were separately interviewed to avoid duplication or improper influence on each other. Therefore, no debriefing was done in the study. As a result, the respondents stayed genuine and natural to the study.

However, several methodological assumptions were applied in this study on the reliability and credibility of the experiment. First, it was assumed that the researchers had access to the participants following the completion of their interviews so that the researchers can review their statements (Bowen, 2009). This factor would allow the researchers to increase the reliability of their findings. Secondly, the study assumed that the sample population gave their personal information and experience concerning family communication and its impact to maintain the credibility of this study. Additionally, a tropical assumption in this study was that family communication was identified from every family set-up, and its impact on the children was measurable. Afterward, the data derived from the experiment, the literature review was analyzed, and the findings of the study presented in the most appropriate way. The methods used enabled the experiment to answer the research question efficiently.

Debriefing

The experiment received no complaints from the public but was smoothly conducted. After the survey, the researcher sent letters of appreciation to the institutions that participated in the experiment. Moreover, journals on the effects and importance of parental or family communication were distributed to the participants. The journals aimed at giving advice and enlightening the population on the topic of concerns.

Conclusion

The researchers ensured that the most suitable methods were selected for the experiment. Efficient methods should ensure that a broad range of data can be gathered concerning the variables of the study. Afterward, the analysis of the information should be accurate and ensure that the viability and reliability of the obtained results are granted.