Publication Date


Document Type

Masters Thesis


School for Social Work


Father and child, Fathers and sons, Fathers-Psychology, Father involvement, Intergenerational, Family assessment


This study used a pictorial assessment instrument, the Family Circles instrument, to determine (a) if there are generational differences in pictorial representations of father involvement, and (b) if participants tend to represent father involvement as similar between their family-of-origin and current family experiences. A subset of the California-based, longitudinal Supporting Father Involvement study, the sample consisted of 42 mothers and 50 fathers; 33 of the mothers and fathers were in a couple relationship with one another, sharing at least one child together. According to both mothers' and fathers' reports, fathers were depicted as more involved (i.e., more central in the family and closer to their children) in current nuclear families than were fathers in the family-of-origin. Fathers whose own fathers were involved during their childhood tend to see themselves as involved fathers, and those who did not experience involved fathers appear to work at correcting that pattern with their own children. The need for future studies to explore how and why mothers might encourage increased father involvement is discussed.




iii, 62 p. Thesis (M.S.W.)-Smith College School for Social Work, Northampton, Mass., 2010. Includes bibliographical references (p. 46-56)