Date of Award

8-2016

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Legacy Department

International Family and Community Studies

Committee Member

Dr. Mark Small, Committee Chair

Committee Member

Dr. James McDonell

Committee Member

Dr. Susan Limber

Committee Member

Dr. Martie Thompson

Abstract

Because attitudes toward marriage impact the lives of many members of society, it is important to understand what those attitudes are and what predicts such attitudes in order to inform future research and marriage advocacy. Furthermore, to design studies to examine attitudes toward marriage, it is important to have an understanding of the power of previous studies. Towards those goals, this study attempted to answer two questions: a) To what extent do attitudes of Albanians toward marriage parallel theorized typologies of attitudes? b) What predicts membership in attitudinal groups? To answer these questions, this study examined attitudes toward marriage among Albanians using data from the 2008 European Values Study. It tested the hypothesis that institutional, companionate, and individualistic attitudes toward marriage documented in literature from Europe and North America would emerge in the data from Albania, alongside a hypothesized fourth “façade” attitudinal grouping. It further tested the hypothesis that lower educational attainment, higher religiosity, increasing age, being male, living in rural areas, having a lower income, reporting lower parental educational attainment, living with both parents at age 14, and having no history of cohabitation would positively and significantly predict membership in more traditional attitudinal clusters. A hierarchical agglomerative cluster analysis with a forced four-cluster solution and a follow-up discriminant analysis were used to test the first hypothesis and a multinomial logistic regression analysis was used to test the second hypothesis. In order to inform future studies, a power analysis of the multinomial logistic regression results and sample size estimates for forthcoming studies were also conducted. The study found that the three attitudinal groups in literature emerged in the cluster and discriminant analyses. The façade group did not emerge. Using weighted data with replacement of missing values, the study found that age and degree of urbanism were significant predictors of membership in attitudinal groups. The power analysis indicated that the study was robustly powered, while sample size estimates suggested that between 600 to 1400 respondents will be needed for future studies of similar variables in a similar population. The findings show that Albania is very similar to the rest of Europe in its place on the map of attitudes toward marriage. The study lays the groundwork for future studies and can inform advocacy for stronger marriages and families in Albania.

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