Cheri LongFollow




School of Education


Doctor of Education (EdD)


Sharon Michael-Chadwell


autonomy, competence, parent involvement, relatedness, self-determination theory, single fathers


Education | Student Counseling and Personnel Services


This qualitative collective case study explored single fathers' experiences in rearing academically successful children. Academic success was defined as the completion of high school or college, entering college, or attending college. A purposeful maximal sampling of five bounded systems of single fathers and their academically successful children participated in the current study, using snowball sampling. Data collection methods consisted of interviews with single fathers and their children, observations, timelines, letters, and physical artifacts. Within-case and cross-case analysis of data assisted in explaining the experiences of single fathers rearing academically successful children in order to assist other single fathers. Five emerging themes developed from the data. Making their children a priority and involvement in school related functions and sports/organizations emerged as a commonality in satisfying the research question--What are the experiences of single fathers rearing academically successful children? Single fathers described specific academic strategies and high expectations, which satisfied the research questions--What academic involvement activities do single fathers participate in that may influence their children's academic success?--and How does the single father's perception of competence and autonomy contribute to the academic success of children? Finally, support emerged as a theme satisfying the research question--What factors of relatedness affect single fathers rearing academically successful children?