Matching Items (10)

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Developmental changes in anxiety and social competence in early childhood: exploring growth and the roles of child temperament and gender

Description

This dissertation examined how anxiety levels and social competence change across the course of early elementary school, as well as how individual differences at the transition to kindergarten may influence

This dissertation examined how anxiety levels and social competence change across the course of early elementary school, as well as how individual differences at the transition to kindergarten may influence these trajectories. Previous research has supported unidirectional relations among anxiety and social competence, but few studies explore how inter- and intra-individual changes in social competence and anxiety may be related across time. From a developmental perspective, studying these trajectories following the transition to kindergarten is important, as cognitive and emotion regulation capacities increase markedly across kindergarten, and the relative success with which children navigate this transition can have a bearing on future social and emotional functioning across elementary school. In addition, given gender differences in anxiety manifestation and social competence development broadly, gender differences were also examined in an exploratory manner. Data from parent and teacher reports of a community sample of 291 children across kindergarten, 1st, and 2nd grades were analyzed. Results from bivariate growth models revealed steeper increases in anxiety, relative to peers in the sample, were associated with steeper decreases in social competence across time. This finding held after controlling for externalizing behavior problems at each time point, which suggests that relations among anxiety and social competence may be independent of other behavior problems commonly associated with poor social adjustment. Temperament variables were associated with changes in social competence, such that purportedly "risky" temperament traits of higher negative emotionality and lower attention control were associated with concurrently lower social competence in kindergarten, but with relatively steeper increases in social competence across time. Temperament variables in kindergarten were unrelated with changes in anxiety across time. Gender differences in relations among anxiety in kindergarten and growth in social competence also were revealed. Findings for teacher and parent reports of child behavior varied. Results are discussed with respect to contexts that may drive differences between parent and teacher reports of child behavior, as well as key developmental considerations that may help to explain why kindergarten temperament variables examined herein appear to predict changes in social competence but not changes in anxiety levels.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016

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Inhibitory control, negative emotionality, and threat appraisals as predictors of children's status in the context of bullying

Description

A model of the effects of early adolescents' temperament (negative emotionality and inhibitory control) and threat appraisals on resulting status in the bullying dynamic was examined. Specifically, I examined the

A model of the effects of early adolescents' temperament (negative emotionality and inhibitory control) and threat appraisals on resulting status in the bullying dynamic was examined. Specifically, I examined the hypothesis that negative emotionality and passive victim versus bully-victim status would be mediated by threat appraisals, and that mediated effect would be moderated by levels of inhibitory control. The study used a sample of 56 early adolescents ages 7–16. Temperament characteristics were measured using the EATQ–R (Capaldi & Rothbart, 1992). Threat appraisals were assessed using items from Hunter, Boyle, and Warden (2004). Bullying and victimization were measured using items created for this study and additional cyber bullying items (Smith, Mahdavi, Carvalho, & Tippett, 2006). A multinomial logistic regression and test of moderated mediation were analyzed to examine the model (Hayes, 2012). Higher levels of negative emotionality were correlated with being a victim of bullying. The moderated mediation model was not statistically significant, however the direction of the patterns fit the hypotheses. Future directions and limitations are discussed.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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Transactional processes of parent-child interactions from early to middle childhood

Description

Theoretical models support conceptualizing parent-child relationships as reciprocal and transactional with each person exerting influence on the other’s behaviors and the overall quality and valence of the relationship across time.

Theoretical models support conceptualizing parent-child relationships as reciprocal and transactional with each person exerting influence on the other’s behaviors and the overall quality and valence of the relationship across time. The goals of this study were twofold: 1) determine whether there were reciprocal relations in maternal hostility and child negativity across early and middle childhood, and 2) investigate whether individual characteristics (i.e., child temperamental anger and frustration and maternal neuroticism) moderated relations found in goal one. Data were from the Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development. Empirical support was found for conceptualizing mother-child interactions as reciprocal. Maternal hostility was related to a decrease in the probability children would exhibit negative behaviors during mother-child interactions measured approximately two years later. Child negativity was also associated with a significant decrease in the probability mothers would display future hostility.

Child temperamental anger and frustration was found to moderate reciprocal relations across all three parent-to-child cross-lagged paths. Children scoring high on a dispositional proclivity to react with anger and frustration were more likely to avoid maternal hostility, via a significant decrease in negativity, across time. Moderation was also supported in two of three child-to-parent lagged paths. Finally, maternal neuroticism moderated the reciprocal effects during early childhood, such that more neurotic mothers were more likely to demonstrate a decrease in the probability of hostility relative to mothers scoring lower on neuroticism. This affect was attenuated in middle childhood, with patterns becoming similar between mothers scoring high and low on neuroticism. Moreover, children of less neurotic mothers were more likely to demonstrate a decrease in the probability of exhibiting negativity from 36 to 54 months compared to children of more neurotic mothers. This effect also attenuated with patterns becoming negative at the grade 1 to grade 3 lag. Overall, the results from this study supported a transactional model of parent-child relationships, were consistent with the motivation literature, did not support a coercive process of interaction when the sample and measurement paradigm were low-risk, and generally suggested parents and children have an equal influence on the relational processes investigated from early to middle childhood.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016

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Temperament as a moderator of the relation between interparental conflict and maladjustment in children from divorced families

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ABSTRACT

This cross-sectional study examined whether the temperament dimensions of negative emotionality, positive emotionality, and impulsivity moderated the relation between interparental conflict and children’s internalizing and externalizing problems. The sample consisted

ABSTRACT

This cross-sectional study examined whether the temperament dimensions of negative emotionality, positive emotionality, and impulsivity moderated the relation between interparental conflict and children’s internalizing and externalizing problems. The sample consisted of 355 divorced mothers and their children (9-12 years old) who participated in a randomized controlled trial of a preventive parenting intervention for divorcing families. Children provided reports of their experiences of interparental conflict and internalizing and externalizing problems; mothers provided reports of children’s temperament and internalizing and externalizing problems. The relations were examined separately for child report and mother report of outcomes using multiple regression analyses. Results found no support for the interactive effect of interparental conflict and temperament dimensions on children’s internalizing or externalizing problems. Consistent with an additive model of their effects, interparental conflict and temperament dimensions were directly and independently related to the outcomes. There was a significant, positive effect of interparental conflict and negative emotionality on children’s internalizing and externalizing problems. Positive emotionality was significantly, negatively related to internalizing and externalizing problems. Impulsivity was significantly, positively related to externalizing problems only. The patterns of results varied somewhat across mother and child report of interparental conflict on externalizing problems and positive emotionality on internalizing problems. The results of this study are consistent with the previous research on the significant main effects of interparental conflict and temperament dimensions on children’s internalizing and externalizing problems. These findings suggest that children’s environment and intrapersonal characteristics, represented by children’s experiences of interparental conflict and temperament, both uniquely contribute to children’s post-divorce internalizing and externalizing problems.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016

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Genetic and environmental influences on associations among multiple sleep parameters, weight indicators and weight status, and effortful control in young twins

Description

Prior research has established associations between sleep duration and body mass index (BMI) scores and risk for obesity in middle childhood, but it is less clear whether other objectively- and

Prior research has established associations between sleep duration and body mass index (BMI) scores and risk for obesity in middle childhood, but it is less clear whether other objectively- and subjectively-measured sleep indicators may be associated with BMI scores, weight status (e.g., obesity), and other estimates of weight and body fat such as waist circumference (WC) and percent body fat. Empirical studies have also demonstrated independent associations between broad self-regulation and sleep indicators and BMI scores, but no study to date has tested these factors in a model together and the extent to which associations between normative sleep problems, weight indicators, and effortful control (EC) may be explained by shared genetic or environmental influences. Data from a large longitudinal study of twins was used to test phenotypic associations between sleep problems at eight years and weight indicators at nine years, including whether EC at eight years moderates these associations. Additionally, multiple quantitative behavior genetic models were used to estimate unique and shared genetic and environmental covariances among normative sleep problems, weight indicators, and EC at eight years of age and whether additive genetic influence on weight in middle childhood differs by child weight status group. Phenotypic findings showed that greater sleep duration at eight years predicted greater decreases BMI at nine years of age for children with low levels of EC at eight years. Greater sleep midpoint variability at eight years predicted greater increases in percent body fat from eight to nine years of age for children with low EC at eight years. Behavior genetic findings showed greater environmental influences on parent-reported sleep duration and quality, as well as objective sleep midpoint variability. Similarly, associations between parent-reported sleep duration and sleep midpoint variability and other sleep indicators and EC were primarily accounted for by shared environmental factors. In contrast, there was high additive genetic influence on objective sleep quantity and quality, all weight indicators, and EC. Many of the associations between sleep indicators, sleep and weight indicators, and among weight indicators were entirely accounted for by shared additive genetic factors, suggesting that common, underlying sets of genes explain these relations.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2019

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Parasympathetic nervous system function, temperament, and adjustment in preschoolers

Description

This study examines the relations among three aspects of temperament (shyness, impulsivity, and effortful control), resting respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA) recorded during a calming film and RSA suppression during three

This study examines the relations among three aspects of temperament (shyness, impulsivity, and effortful control), resting respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA) recorded during a calming film and RSA suppression during three behavioral measures of effortful control, and adjustment (anxiety and externalizing behavior) in a sample of 101 preschool-age children. Principal components analysis was used to create composites for effortful control, shyness, impulsivity, anxiety, and externalizing behavior, and hierarchical regression analysis was used to test the study hypotheses. As expected, baseline RSA was negatively related to effortful control in shy children, but was unrelated to effortful control in children who were not shy. It was hypothesized that high baseline RSA would reduce the relation between shyness and anxiety, and between impulsivity and externalizing behavior; this hypothesis was supported for externalizing behavior, but not for anxiety. The interaction between impulsivity and RSA as a predictor of externalizing was statistically independent of effortful control, indicating that these are unique effects. Finally, it was hypothesized that RSA suppression would be positively related to effortful control for children low, but not high, in shyness. There was a marginal interaction between shyness and RSA suppression, with RSA suppression marginally negatively related to EC for children low in shyness, but unrelated to effortful control for children high in shyness; the direction of this association was opposite predictions. These findings indicate that RSA is more strongly related to effortful control for children high in shyness, and that it consequently may not be appropriate to use RSA as an index of EC for all children. This study also draws attention to the need to consider the context in which baseline RSA is measured because a true baseline may not be obtained for shy children if RSA is measured in an unfamiliar laboratory context. The finding that high RSA moderated (but did not eliminate) the relation between impulsivity and externalizing behavior is consistent with the conceptualization of RSA as a measure of self-regulation, but further research is needed to clarify the mechanism underlying this effect.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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A Quantitative genetic analysis of caregiver-reported and observed fear, anger, and sadness in middle childhood

Description

The purpose of the current study was to use structural equation modeling-based quantitative genetic models to characterize latent genetic and environmental influences on proneness to three discrete negative emotions in

The purpose of the current study was to use structural equation modeling-based quantitative genetic models to characterize latent genetic and environmental influences on proneness to three discrete negative emotions in middle childhood, according to mother-report, father-report and in-home observation. One primary aim was to test the extent to which covariance among the three emotions could be accounted for by a single, common genetically- and environmentally-influenced negative emotionality factor. A second aim was to examine the extent to which different reporters appeared to be tapping into the same genetically- and environmentally-influenced aspects of each emotion. According to mother- and father-report, moderate to high genetic influences were evident for all emotions, with mother- and father-report of fear and father-report of anger showing the highest heritability. Significant common environmental influences were also found for mother-report of anger and sadness in both univariate and multivariate models. For observed emotion, anger was moderately heritable with no evidence for common environmental variance, but sadness, object fear and social fear all showed modest to moderate common environmental influences and no significant genetic variance. In addition, cholesky decompositions examining genetic and environmental influences across reporter suggested that despite considerable overlap between mother-report and father-report, there was also reporter-specific variance on anger, sadness, and fear. Specifically, there were significant common environmental influences on mother-report of anger- and sadness that were not shared with father-report, and genetic influences on father-report of sadness and fear that were not shared with mother-report. In-home observations were not highly correlated enough with parent-report to support multivariate analysis for any emotion. Finally, according to both mother- and father-report, a single set of genetic and environmental influences was sufficient to account for covariance among all three negative emotions. However, fear was primarily explained by genetic influences not shared with other emotions, and anger also showed considerable emotion-specific genetic variance. In both cases, findings support the value of a more emotion-specific approach to temperament, and highlight the need to consider distinctions as well as commonalities across emotions, reporters and situations.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2013

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Differential prediction of internalizing and externalizing symptomatology

Description

Using data from an eight-year longitudinal study of 214 children's social and emotional development, I conducted three studies to (1) examine patterns of agreement for internalizing (INT) and externalizing (EXT)

Using data from an eight-year longitudinal study of 214 children's social and emotional development, I conducted three studies to (1) examine patterns of agreement for internalizing (INT) and externalizing (EXT) symptomatology among different informants (mothers, fathers, teachers, and adolescents) using a recently developed structural equation modeling approach for multi-trait, multi-method data; (2) examine the developmental trajectories for INT and EXT and predict individual differences in symptom development using temperament and parenting variables; and (3) describe patterns of INT and EXT co-occurrence and predict these patterns from temperament and parenting. In Study 1, longitudinal invariance was established for mothers', fathers' and teachers' reports over a six-year period. Sex, age, and SES did not substantially moderate agreement among informants, although both sex and age were differentially related to symptomatology depending on the informant. Agreement among teachers and mothers, but not among mothers and fathers, differed by domain of symptomatology, and was greater for EXT than for INT. In Study 2, latent profile analysis, a person-centered analytic approach, did not provide easily interpretable patterns of symptom development, a failure that is likely the result of the relatively modest sample size. Latent growth curve models, an alternative analytic approach, did provide good fit to the data. Temperament and parenting variables were examined as predictors of the latent growth parameters in these models. Although there was little prediction of the slope, effortful control was negatively related to overall levels of EXT, whereas impulsivity and anger were positively related. Mutually responsive orientation, a measure of the parent-child relationship, was a more consistent predictor of EXT than was parental warmth. Furthermore, the relation between mutually responsive orientation and EXT was partially mediated by inhibitory control. Across informants, there were few consistent predictors of INT. In Study 3, latent profile analysis was used to classify individuals into different patterns of INT and EXT co-occurrence. In these models, a similar class structure was identified for mothers and for teachers. When temperament and parenting were examined as predictors of co-occurring symptomatology, few significant interactions were found and results largely replicated prior findings from this data set using arbitrary symptom groups.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2013

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Prenatal stress and infant regulatory capacity

Description

The development of self-regulation is believed to play a crucial role in predicting later psychopathology and is believed to begin in early childhood. The early postpartum period is particularly important

The development of self-regulation is believed to play a crucial role in predicting later psychopathology and is believed to begin in early childhood. The early postpartum period is particularly important in laying the groundwork for later self-regulation as infants' dispositional traits interact with caregivers' co-regulatory behaviors to produce the earliest forms of self-regulation. Moreover, although emerging literature suggests that infants' exposure to maternal stress even before birth may be integral in determining children's self-regulatory capacities, the complex pathways that characterize these developmental processes remain unclear. The current study considers the complex, transactional processes in a high-risk, Mexican American sample. Data were collected from 305 Mexican American infants and their mothers during prenatal, 6- and 12-week home interviews. Mother self-reports of stress were obtained prenatally between 34-37 weeks gestation. Mother reports of infant temperamental negativity and surgency were obtained at 6-weeks as were observed global ratings of maternal sensitivity during a structured peek-a-boo task. Microcoded ratings of infants' engagement orienting and self-comforting behaviors were obtained during the 12-week peek-a-boo task. Study findings suggest that self-comforting and orienting behaviors help to modulate infants' experiences of distress, and also that prenatal stress influences infants' engagement in each of those regulatory behaviors, both directly by influence tendencies to engage in orienting behaviors and indirectly by programming higher levels of infant negativity and surgency, both of which may confer risk for later regulatory disadvantage. Advancing our understandings about the nature of these developmental pathways could have significant implications for targets of early intervention in this high-risk population.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2013

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Early predictors of variations in children's emotion understanding: relations with children's disruptive behaviors

Description

The purpose of this study was to examine the longitudinal relations of maternal behaviors, children`s temperamental negative emotionality, and children`s emotion perception processes, including emotion perception accuracy (EPA) and emotion

The purpose of this study was to examine the longitudinal relations of maternal behaviors, children`s temperamental negative emotionality, and children`s emotion perception processes, including emotion perception accuracy (EPA) and emotion perception bias (EPB), to children`s conduct disorder symptoms in a normative sample. Separate structural equation models were conducted to assess whether parenting or children`s proneness to negative emotions at 24-30 (T2), 36-42 (T3) and 48-54 (T4) months predicted children`s EPA and EPB over time, and whether T3 and T4 children`s emotion perception processes were predictive of children`s conduct disorder at 72 months of age (T5). None of the hypothesized longitudinal relations was supported; however, other noteworthy results were observed. T3 children`s proneness to negative emotions was positively related to children`s concurrent bias toward anger. The latent constructs of negative parenting, children`s proneness to negative emotions, and the observed measure of children`s emotion perception accuracy showed stability over time, whereas the observed measures of children`s bias toward understanding distinct negative emotions were unrelated across time. In addition, children`s expressive language was predicted by children`s earlier emotion perception accuracy, which emphasized the importance of improving children`s emotion understanding skills during early years. Furthermore, the previously established negative relation between EPA and EPB variables was only partially supported. Findings regarding the relations between parenting, children`s negative emotionality and emotion perception processes are discussed from a developmental perspective.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2011