Title

A Mother’s Sense of Competence: Association with Housing Status, Residential Moves, Employment, Relationship Status and Education

Location

Room C

Start Time

19-10-2013 10:00 AM

End Time

19-10-2013 10:40 AM

Session Type

Research Paper

Abstract

1.5 million children in the United States are homeless. Children who are homeless are at risk for developmental stress and trauma which can contribute to occupational deprivation, potentially limiting participation in occupations essential to healthy growth and development.2,5 Mothering is an important occupation essential for the development of young children. Mothers, who are homeless, care for their children in environments that can be chaotic and challenging to optimal mothering occupations which, in turn, may negatively impact child occupational participation and development. Given the call by occupational science to more explicitly observe occupation in its environmental and cultural situation1, mothering is an important occupation to explore in the situated sphere. One cognitive self-reflective construct is a mother’s sense of competence indicating self-efficacy and satisfaction as a parent. Research suggests this construct impacts mothering behaviors and in turn, child behaviors. Mothers in at risk environments may experience a diminished sense of competence. Students of occupational science and occupational therapy are called to study co-occupations “of and in natural environments”1 to better understand situated occupations, and to inform occupationally just and best practice family-centered care.

The purpose of this study is to explore contextual influences on a mother’s sense of competence; specifically to study the association of sense of competence to the factors of housing status, number of residential moves, employment, relationship status and education. This study is part of a larger study which will explore preschool children’s sensory, social and emotional behaviors and a mother’s sense of competence.

Participants are a convenience sample of 80 mothers: 18 years of age, with a child 36-71 months, who are homeless or low-income housed from a large Midwest urban city. The Parent Sense of Competence Scale (PSOC)3 measures parental cognition of self-efficacy and satisfaction which reflects parental self esteem, a general parenting domain as opposed to a specific domain or task. The PSOC measures the competence a parent feels about their role and achievement as a parent. The most comprehensive normative data using the PSOC was collected on 1,206 mothers and fathers across children ages 6 months to 18 years.

Quantitative methods will investigate the data from mother reports in a two group assessment method with SPSS 20.0. Descriptive analysis of the mother’s demographic contextual data will compare the groups. The association between the mother’s PSOC and demographic measures will be evaluated by the Fischer’s Exact Chi-square test. Results are pending completion of the interviews and analyses in June 2013.

The outcome of this study can contribute to the understanding and development of mothering in challenging natural environments. Furthermore, this study can add to occupational science research, with a unique focus on enhancing mother child co-occupations taking into account the considerations of cultural and environmental contexts1. Finally the results will provide insight for interdisciplinary policy and intervention agendas to address the needs and occupational possibilities4 of mothers and young children who are homeless and or face multiple environmental challenges.

Learning Objectives

1. Identify the contextual influences of housing status, residential moves, employment, relationship status and education on mothers who are homeless or low-income housed.

2. Describe the association between a mother’s sense of competence and the contextual influences of homeless and low-income housed mothers.

3. Discuss the confluence of a mother’s sense of competence with contextual factors to better understand the occupation of mothering young children in families who are homeless or low-income housed.

References

1. Cutchin, M. (2012). The art and science of occupation: Nature, inquiry and the aesthetics of living. Journal of Occupational Science, iFirst, 1-12.

2. Gewirtz, A.H., DeGarmo, D.S., Plowman, E. J., August, G., & Realmuto, G. (2009). Parenting, parental mental health, and child functioning in families residing in supportive housing. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry 79(3), 336-347.

3. Johnston, C., & Mash, E. J. (1989). A measure of parenting satisfaction and efficacy. Journal of Clinical Child Psychology, 18(2), 167-175.

4. Rudman, D.L. (2006). Occupational terminology: Occupational possibilities. Journal of Occupational Science,17(1), 55-59.

5. Schultz-Krohn, W. (2004). The meaning of family routines in a homeless shelter. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 58(5), 531-542.

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Oct 19th, 10:00 AM Oct 19th, 10:40 AM

A Mother’s Sense of Competence: Association with Housing Status, Residential Moves, Employment, Relationship Status and Education

Room C

1.5 million children in the United States are homeless. Children who are homeless are at risk for developmental stress and trauma which can contribute to occupational deprivation, potentially limiting participation in occupations essential to healthy growth and development.2,5 Mothering is an important occupation essential for the development of young children. Mothers, who are homeless, care for their children in environments that can be chaotic and challenging to optimal mothering occupations which, in turn, may negatively impact child occupational participation and development. Given the call by occupational science to more explicitly observe occupation in its environmental and cultural situation1, mothering is an important occupation to explore in the situated sphere. One cognitive self-reflective construct is a mother’s sense of competence indicating self-efficacy and satisfaction as a parent. Research suggests this construct impacts mothering behaviors and in turn, child behaviors. Mothers in at risk environments may experience a diminished sense of competence. Students of occupational science and occupational therapy are called to study co-occupations “of and in natural environments”1 to better understand situated occupations, and to inform occupationally just and best practice family-centered care.

The purpose of this study is to explore contextual influences on a mother’s sense of competence; specifically to study the association of sense of competence to the factors of housing status, number of residential moves, employment, relationship status and education. This study is part of a larger study which will explore preschool children’s sensory, social and emotional behaviors and a mother’s sense of competence.

Participants are a convenience sample of 80 mothers: 18 years of age, with a child 36-71 months, who are homeless or low-income housed from a large Midwest urban city. The Parent Sense of Competence Scale (PSOC)3 measures parental cognition of self-efficacy and satisfaction which reflects parental self esteem, a general parenting domain as opposed to a specific domain or task. The PSOC measures the competence a parent feels about their role and achievement as a parent. The most comprehensive normative data using the PSOC was collected on 1,206 mothers and fathers across children ages 6 months to 18 years.

Quantitative methods will investigate the data from mother reports in a two group assessment method with SPSS 20.0. Descriptive analysis of the mother’s demographic contextual data will compare the groups. The association between the mother’s PSOC and demographic measures will be evaluated by the Fischer’s Exact Chi-square test. Results are pending completion of the interviews and analyses in June 2013.

The outcome of this study can contribute to the understanding and development of mothering in challenging natural environments. Furthermore, this study can add to occupational science research, with a unique focus on enhancing mother child co-occupations taking into account the considerations of cultural and environmental contexts1. Finally the results will provide insight for interdisciplinary policy and intervention agendas to address the needs and occupational possibilities4 of mothers and young children who are homeless and or face multiple environmental challenges.

Learning Objectives

1. Identify the contextual influences of housing status, residential moves, employment, relationship status and education on mothers who are homeless or low-income housed.

2. Describe the association between a mother’s sense of competence and the contextual influences of homeless and low-income housed mothers.

3. Discuss the confluence of a mother’s sense of competence with contextual factors to better understand the occupation of mothering young children in families who are homeless or low-income housed.