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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Investigating the relationship between perceived social support and parent self-efficacy in parents of preschool-aged children Hoven, Michaelyn R


The relationship between perceived social support and parent self-efficacy was investigated in this study. The concept of self-efficacy as defined by Bandura was explored and the concept of perceived social support examined. It was hypothesized that high levels of perceived social support would be related to high levels of parent self-efficacy. Participants were 77 parents of children 2 to 5 years who had not yet started kindergarten. Parent self-efficacy was measured using the Parenting Sense of Competence Scale (PSOC; Gibaud-Wallston & Wandersman, 1978). Parents’ perceived social support was measured through the Social Provisions Scale (SPS; Cutrona & Russell, 1987). The shortened Perceived Stress Scale (PSS-10; Cohen & Williamson, 1988) was used to determine the levels of parents’ general life stress. The possibility of a stress-moderated model was explored and analyzed using SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences) software. A significant positive relationship between social support and parent self-efficacy was noted as were significant negative relationships between stress and social support and stress and parent self-efficacy. There was no significant difference in the social support and parent self-efficacy relationship based on the levels of stress (moderated model). There was significant mediation of the social support/parent self-efficacy relationship by stress. Including stress in the regression accounted for 34% of the variance in parent self-efficacy scores (compared to 15% when only social support was included). The present study discusses the benefit of social support programs for families with preschool-aged children within a specific population.

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