Volume 10

Parental Styles and Political Affiliation Influences on Vocational Motives

Sean P. Toland

Early parenting styles set the tone for adult relationships and may even influence an adult child’s occupation choice. This study examined the differences in parenting styles and political affiliation and how they affect vocational motives in their children. A sample of 162 college students was randomly assigned to read one of six scenarios describing a college student whose parents were authoritarian, authoritative, or permissive and either Republican or Democratic. Participants then rated the scenario character on monetary, prestigious, and intrinsic vocational motivation. Participants who read a scenario of a character raised by Republican parents rated that character as having higher monetary vocational motivation than participants who read a scenario of a character raised by Democratic parents. Further, participants who read a scenario of a character raised by authoritarian parents rated that character to have higher monetary vocational motivation than participants who read a scenario of a character raised by permissive parents.

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