Date Approved

5-1-2002

Embargo Period

5-16-2016

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

M.A. in School Psychology

Department

Educational Services and Leadership

College

College of Education

First Advisor

Klanderman, John

Second Advisor

Dihoff, Roberta

Subject(s)

Birth order; Middle-born children; Self-esteem in children

Disciplines

Educational Psychology

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to investigate whether middle children who are the only male or only female child in the family have higher self-esteem than those middle children who are the same gender as one or more of their siblings. The Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale was administered to a total of fifty middle children, who ranged in age from ten through fourteen years old. These children were students in grades five through eight at a small, urban middle school in southern New Jersey. There were thirty-six students who had one or more siblings of the same gender as the student. The second group was comprised of fourteen students who had siblings of the opposite gender as the student.

A t-test was used to analyze the results obtained on the self-esteem scale. Results of the study found a significant difference in the mean scores of the two groups of students. The mean score of the group of middle children who were the only male or female child in their family was significantly higher than the mean score of the group of middle children who had one or more siblings of the same gender as the student.

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