Date of Award


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The following research uses labeling theory to determine what type of individual is most likely to be labeled negatively by their parents during adolescence. Labeling theory hypothesizes that if an individual is negatively labeled they are more likely to engage in secondary deviance than an individual who is not labeled negatively. The assumptions of labeling theory will be identified. Types and levels of deviance will be identified. Prior research will also be examined to identify what types of characteristics have already been identified as to increase the likelihood ofbeing labeled negatively. Next, the sample and methodology will be identified. The characteristics that aretestedincludegender,race, level ofparentaleducation, religion oftheparents,and class of family. Then the types of behaviors or activities that the respondents were involved in during junior high and high school will be summarized and then divided into three categories: conforming behaviors or activities, deviant behaviors or activities, and dating and sex. The respondent's perceived parental responses to their behaviors or activities during junior high and high school have been identified as parental disapproval as a prevention ofprimary deviance; parental disapproval as a prevention ofsecondary deviance; parental disapproval as a prevention ofsecondary deviance; parental disapproval did not prevent secondary deviance, which is further divided into disappointment and labels; and parental apparent approval or acceptance ofdeviant behavior. Finally, each respondent's responses will be summarized and tested against the hypotheses. Then limitations ofthis research will be identified to conclude this research.