Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Human Development and Family Studies

Department name when degree awarded

Family, Consumer, and Human Development

Committee Chair(s)

Randall M. Jones


Randall M. Jones


Troy E. Beckert


Martha T. Dever


This thesis summarizes a study conducted to explore the effect of an educational intervention on cognitive autonomy, identity, hope, and educational aspirations. The primary goal of this study was to investigate (1) the impact of awareness and readiness educational intervention on low-income adolescents’ cognitive autonomy, identity, hope, and educational intentions, and (2) how the low-income adolescents receiving the awareness readiness educational intervention compared to adolescents who did not receive the intervention. The Cognitive Autonomy and Self-Evaluation (CASE) inventory, the Modified Extended Version of the Object Measure of Ego Identity Status (EOMEIS), The Children’s Hope Scale, and a self-report of educational aspirations were used to measure the four variables in this study. Subjects included 38 adolescents, ages 13 to 17, from lower socioeconomic status (SES), located in the two different school districts who participate in the GEAR UP intervention, and a comparison sample included 47 adolescents, ages 14 to 17, from various classes at a local high school. Findings reveal that changes from time 1 to time 2 (four months) for adolescents participating in the educational intervention were not significant in three of the four areas. The educational aspirations results were statistically significant. The adolescents in the educational intervention group and from the comparison sample found to be similar on all measures, thus establishing a form or social validation. Results may be contingent on the type of sample obtained and testing procedures. The results of this study indicate there may need to be further research in this area.