Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Human Development and Family Studies

Department name when degree awarded

Family and Human Development

Committee Chair(s)

Ramona Marotz-Baden


Ramona Marotz-Baden


The purpose of this study was to investigate actual decision making in two types of families in which both spouses worked and their perceptions of decision making responsibility in the ideal family. The two family types were composed of (1) Professional wives with professional husbands; and (2) nonprofessional wives with nonprofessional husbands.

Questionnaires were completed by 34 professional couples and 63 nonprofessional couples who resided in Flint, Michigan during the fall of 1976. Factor analyses were completed on the husbands' and wives' self reported responses to questions concerning who should make decisions in the ideal family and who actually mode the decisions in their own family. Professional couples reported that in their own families the majority of the decisions were the major responsibility of the wife and they expected the ideal family's decisions to also be the major responsibility of the wife. Nonprofessional couples reported a more egaIitarian sharing of decision making in their own families and also expected an equal sharing of decision making their concept of the ideal family.