School of Education


Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership (EdD)


James Swezey


Military Dependent Students, Military Family Stress, Adolescent Development, Permanent Change of Station (PCS), Combat Deployment, Social Cognitive Theory, Social Learning Theory


Education | Educational Leadership


The purpose of this explanatory case study is to understand how the military culture and inherent stress affect the development of military dependent high school children as explained by high school professionals. For this research, military stressors were identified as combat deployments, permanent change of stations, and living within a military household. The conceptual framework that influenced this research was the social cognitive theory as developed by Albert Bandura and Ronald Akers’ social learning theory, both of which explain how children learn from observing individuals and their environments. This study sought to answer the central research question: How do high school educational professionals explain the impacts of stressors on the development of military dependent students whose lives are immersed and enmeshed in today’s military culture? These individuals were either high school teachers, instructors, and administrators who teach/administrate high school students who are military dependent. The perceptions of these professionals were attained from individual interviews, a focus group interview, and participant letters to hypothetical incoming military dependent students. Data were collected from the interviews with the high school professionals, memoing, and the participants’ letters. The analysis of data began with transcribing, categorizing, coding, and identifying themes. The results of this study suggest that the stress of living within the military culture on military dependent high school students, as perceived by high school education professionals, can be culturally, socially, and academically beneficial to their development.