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Is the Nuclear Family Disappearing?

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Introduction

Is the Nuclear Family Disappearing? By Rosie Winter Aim: The issue I have chosen to investigate is whether the nuclear family is disappearing from our society. I have decided on this topic as I feel the rise in diversity in the family structure is extremely relevant in today's changing society. Post Modernists argue that most people now live in a series of different family structures in the course of their lives. There is greater interest and acceptance in the diversity of the family and more people are getting divorced however, I do not believe that the nuclear family is vanishing. My hypothesis is that the nuclear family is still the ideal form. (104 words) Context and Concepts: One major concept that informs my research is that of the nuclear family. The nuclear family is where two generations of family members are living in the same household. The nuclear family consists of two parents and their dependant children. Another key concept is that of diversity. Diversity means variety of family structures in modern society. These concepts are important because some sociologists believe that changes and diversity in the nuclear family structure are leading to the nuclear family disappearing altogether. ...read more.

Middle

However, he did accept that some changes were taking place; in particular families were no longer conventional. (406 Words) Main Method: The main research method that I shall use will be structured questionnaires with closed questions where the participant has a series of clear questions with tick boxes for the answers, for example, 'Do you live in the traditional nuclear family structure?' The questionnaire will also have a few attitude scale questions so that I can gain the participants opinion through an attitude scale, for instance, 'Do you see the nuclear family as ideal?' The scale will range from 1 to 6, 1 being strongly agree, 6 being strongly disagree. Questionnaires are used to gain a qualitative sample of research and this will make the final results more representative. An advantage of questionnaires is that they are less time consuming than an interview and are also more anonymous, so is more likely to gain more accurate results. Before I hand out my questionnaires, I will create a draft to make sure that a sample group can understand it. I must take care to put in any explanations about certain terms they may not understand, e.g. ...read more.

Conclusion

There are ethical considerations to be made as well, people may not want to talk about their family, or it may be upsetting for them, even if the questionnaires are anonymous. What's more, it might be possible that the respondent's family structure may have changed several times, which my questionnaire will not pick up on, as is requesting on their family structure on that day. Nevertheless, the main problem that I may come across is a low response rate. Students may take the questionnaire and forget about it, throw it away or write silly and made up answers. Students often sit together and they may discuss the questionnaire and not take it seriously or may feel embarrassed their family structure is not like everyone else's. Moreover, this and also low response rate will then affect the validity of the results because it increases the chances of a self-selected sample. If only a small proportion of the sample group replies to the questionnaire, then I am unable to know if the number of replies is representative of the sample group. Feminists object to questionnaire research because they believe that it is important to involve the subjects of research in the research method. Interactionists also believe that the researcher cannot gain genuine results unless the researcher gets close to those they are studying. (210) ...read more.

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