Katherine A. Behar, Psy.D., is a 2017 graduate of the Psy.D. Program in Clinical Psychology at Antioch University, New England

Dissertation Committee:

  • Martha Straus, Ph.D., Committee Chair
  • Barbara Belcher-Timme, Psy.D., Committee Member
  • Gina Pasquale, Psy.D., Committee Member


Generation X, learning disability, parental stress, self-efficacy, socioeconomic status

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The allocation of educational resources has been a widely debated topic. While scholars and government officials have focused their attention on how resources are divided, significantly less attention has been paid to how parents are advocating for their children to obtain necessary resources themselves. Existing data agree that fighting for educational resources can cause stress to parents (Levine, 2006). This is especially true for parents of children with learning disabilities. These children often require more individualized academic and educational attention. Currently, little research exists which focuses on the relationship between parental stress and parental self efficacy (the belief that one has an ability to accomplish a task) and none of the existing research focuses on parents of learning disabled children specifically. Self-efficacy is particularly important for those seeking resources for their children because parents who believe they can gain resources for their children are more likely to attempt to do so. The purpose of this study was to understand the relationship between parental stress and parental self-efficacy as well as understand the impact socioeconomic status has on parental perception of efficacy. Using a series of regression models, I determined that there is a negative correlation between stress and self-efficacy but that socioeconomic status seems to have no impact on the strength of this relationship. Such results suggest that regardless of socioeconomic status, the more stress Generation X parents feel, the less self-efficacious they feel. While no significant moderation was found, understanding the relationship between self-efficacy and parental stress of Generation X parents is still important. This information can help inform mental health practitioner’s conceptualization and treatment of parents of learning-disabled children.


Katherine A. Behar

ORCID Scholar ID# 0000-0002-5655-3144