"Preparing them for the road": African migrant parents' perceptions of their role in their children's career decision-making

Akosah-Twumasi, Peter, Alele, Faith, Emeto, Theophilus I., Lindsay, Daniel, Tsey, Komla, and Malau-Aduli, Bunmi S. (2020) "Preparing them for the road": African migrant parents' perceptions of their role in their children's career decision-making. Education Science, 10 (5). 138.

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There are numerous theories on parenting styles, however, they are Western-oriented and may not be applicable to collectivist non-Western societies. A qualitative study which utilised semi-structured interviews was conducted to explore the perceived parenting roles of 26 Sub-Saharan African (SSA) migrant parents (both humanitarian and professional migrants) in their children's career pathways after they migrated to Australia. Data were analysed using grounded theory methods and this process facilitated the creation of a new framework to provide an in-depth understanding of how SSA parenting styles informed the migrant children's career choices while living in Australia. The study revealed that most SSA migrant parents maintained their style of parenting as used in their home countries. Interestingly, some parents adapted their parenting styles due to their perceptions of changed circumstances within the host country. Other parents, who would normally be authoritative, became trustful due to their perceived lack of educational expertise to guide their children. Conversely, some other parents who would normally be authoritarian employed wily tactics in influencing their children's decision, so as to circumvent the strict Australian legal framework around children's rights. Irrespective of parenting style applied, all the parents aimed to either guide or direct their children's educational and career development to ensure that they become economically productive adults. From the discourse of the SSA migrants' perceptions of their parental role, we offer potential explanations for what underpins their parenting preferences and the rippling effects on their children's career trajectories. Direction for areas of continued research are presented, and implications of the findings are discussed.

Item ID: 63110
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 2227-7102
Keywords: Sub-Saharan African migrants; career choice; adolescents; parental role; parenting style; collectivism; individualism; societal norms
Copyright Information: © 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open accessarticle distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution(CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Funders: Australian Research Training Scholarship
Date Deposited: 29 Jun 2020 22:05
FoR Codes: 39 EDUCATION > 3904 Specialist studies in education > 390401 Comparative and cross-cultural education @ 50%
47 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 4702 Cultural studies > 470211 Migrant cultural studies @ 50%
SEO Codes: 93 EDUCATION AND TRAINING > 9301 Learner and Learning > 930104 Moral and Social Development (incl. Affect) @ 50%
92 HEALTH > 9205 Specific Population Health (excl. Indigenous Health) > 920503 Health Related to Specific Ethnic Groups @ 50%
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