Author(s): Olson SL, Sameroff AJ, Kerr DC, Lopez NL, Wellman HM, Olson SL, Sameroff AJ, Kerr DC, Lopez NL, Wellman HM
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Abstract Examined associations between effortful control temperament and externalizing problems in 220 3-year-old boys and girls, controlling for co-occurring cognitive and social risk factors. We also considered possible additive and/or interactive contributions of child dispositional anger and psychosocial adversity, and whether relations between effortful control and early externalizing problems were moderated by child gender. Individual differences in children's effortful control abilities, assessed using behavioral and parent rating measures, were negatively associated with child externalizing problems reported by mothers, fathers, and preschool teachers. These associations were not overshadowed by other cognitive or social risk factors, or by other relevant child temperament traits such as proneness to irritability. Further analyses revealed that associations between externalizing problem behavior and effortful control were specific to components of child problem behavior indexing impulsive-inattentive symptoms. Thus, children's effortful control skills were important correlates of children's early disruptive behavior, a finding that may provide insight into the developmental origins of chronic behavioral maladjustment.
This article was published in Dev Psychopathol
and referenced in Advanced Techniques in Biology & Medicine