Master's Theses



Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Relatively little research has been done on the stability of expressed values of children and adolescents. The majority of the studies conducted on the subject suggest that there are many aspects of children and adolescents which remain stable with the passage of time, despite the many advances in today's society. In 1936, Symonds surveyed More than 1600 junior and senior high school students from Ridgewood, New York, and Tulsa, Oklahoma for their life problems and interests. His work was largely an effort to determine how well the schools' curriculums fit the needs of their students. Although his study did not attempt to measure change in adolescents, his data have since been used as a baseline for such a Measure in no less than four replication studies. The present investigator, in an attempt to control for the sampling inadequacies of the previous replications, surveyed 204 students from school s in Tulsa, Oklahoma, using Symonds' design. The investigator hypothesized that no changes would be found in the problems and interests of adolescents over the 43 year period spanning the original and present studies. Raw data was analyzed for means and standard errors. These were then compared to the original results, using independent groups t-tests. Results indicate a total of 23 significant changes in those issues of concern and interest to today's student, disconfirming both hypotheses. The causes and interpretations of these shifts are discussed, as are the possible implications for the focus of secondary education curriculums today. In addition, interesting patterns and differences between boys' and girls' rankings are discussed.


Paul Zelhart

Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - campus only access


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