Date of Award

Fall 12-11-2012

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Mathematics and Statistics

First Advisor

Gengsheng Qin

Second Advisor

Christopher Church

Abstract

The duration of children stay in a temporary foster care system needs to be minimal in order to ensure a stable and successful life. However, a time-consuming procedure of investigations is usually taken to decide whether they can reunite with their birth parents. Moreover, if the child fails to reunite with their family, another discharge decision needs to be assessed, leading to even longer time without a normal life. Based on the data from Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS), this thesis derives a prediction model to discriminate the children with a tendency of unsuccessful reunification from the rest. An alternative discharge option can therefore be prepared concurrently for the foster youth with high non-reunification probability. The model is obtained by logistic regression and evaluated with receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curve.

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