Masters Theses

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Child and Family Studies

Major Professor

Cheryl Buehler

Committee Members

Mick Nordquist, John Orme


Children in out-of-home care often experience multiple relocations while in the system of care. This study examined the impact of these multiple relocations on the self- esteem, locus of control, sense of safety, and behavioral problems of 60 adolescent males, age 12-18 years, in the treatment programs of a child care agency located in East Tennessee.

The youth were asked how may placements they had been in while in out-of- home care. Hierarchical multiple regression was used to assess the relationship between these numbers of placements and the subjects' scores on the Self-Esteem Inventory, the Self-Esteem Scale, the Nowicki-Strickland Internal-External Control Scale for Children, the Mastery Scale, the Sense of Safety Scale (developed for this study by the author), and the Child Behavior Checklist Youth Self-Report, while controlling for the youths' age, race, present level of care, and time at present placement.

The hypothesis, that adolescents in out-of-home care who have experienced more moves while in out-of-home care will have lower self-esteem, less of an internal locus of control, lower of a sense of safety, and more behavioral problems than adolescents with fewer moves while in out-of-home care, however, was not supported by the findings. Implications for further research and improved practices in the care of children in out-of- home placements are discussed.

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