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  Parental Encouragement

Parental Report of Encouragement
Last updated: May, 2005

This scale assesses parents’ self-reports of behaviors during involvement focused on encouraging the child in his or her schoolwork and learning. Adapted from Martinez-Pons (1996), the scale was used during our recent study of the parental involvement process (Hoover-Dempsey & Sandler, 2005). 

The scale employed a six-point Likert-type response scale: 1 = not at all true, 2 = a little bit true, 3 = somewhat true, 4 = often true, 5 = mostly true, 6 = completely true.

Alpha reliability for the scale when administered to a sample of 358 parents of public school students in grades 4-6 was .92 (Hoover-Dempsey & Sandler, 2005).

Parents were asked to respond to the following prompt:
“Parents and families do many different things when they help their children with schoolwork. We would like to know how true the following things are for you and your family when you help your child with schoolwork. Please think about the current school year as you read and respond to each item.”

We encourage this child …
… when he or she doesn’t feel like doing schoolwork.
... when he or she has trouble organizing schoolwork.
... to try new ways to do schoolwork when he or she is having a hard time.
... to be aware of how he or she is doing with schoolwork.
... when he or she has trouble doing schoolwork.
... to look for more information about school subjects.
... to develop an interest in schoolwork.
... to believe that he/she can do well in school.
... to stick with problems until he/she solves it.
... to believe that he/she can learn new things.
... to ask other people for help when a problem is hard to solve.
... to explain what he/she thinks to the teacher.
... to follow the teacher’s directions.


Hoover-Dempsey, K.V., & Sandler, H.M. (2005). Final Performance Report for
OERI Grant # R305T010673: The Social Context of Parental Involvement: A
Path to Enhanced Achievement.
Presented to Project Monitor, Institute of
Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education, March 22, 2005.

Martinez-Pons, M. (1996). Test of a model of parental inducement of academic self-regulation. Journal of Experimental Education, 64, 213-227.

The Family-School Partnership Lab is part of the Psychology and Human Development Department, Peabody College, Vanderbilt University.