SAGE Journal Articles
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Pagani, L.S., Japel, C., Vaillancourt, T., & Tremblay, R.E. (2009). Links between middle-childhood trajectories of family dysfunction and indirect aggression. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 25(12), 2175–2198.
Using data from three waves of a large Canadian data set, this research examined the relationship between middle-childhood trajectories of family dysfunction and indirect aggression. The authors applied family systems, developmental psychopathology, and life-course conceptualizations to meet this objective. The data analytic strategy used separate multivariate logits to examine this relationship, with and without the extent to which other possible explanations (acting as control variables) predict belonging to the highest family dysfunction trajectory. These included marital transition, socioeconomic status, family size, and depressive symptoms experienced by the adult most knowledgeable about the child (mostly mothers). The authors also explored possible interactions between indirect aggression and these explanatory variables. Supporting their hypothesis for both boys and girls, prolonged-duration high doses of family dysfunction were associated with the most extreme developmental trajectories of indirect aggression during middle childhood. Results showed gender specificity with respect to the influence of the explanatory variables on family dysfunction. For girls, the link between family dysfunction and indirect aggression persisted above and beyond such contextual influences. For boys, the relationship became unimportant once contextual factors were taken into account.
Questions to Consider:
- Describe the variables and corresponding measures included in the study.
- What are the potential influences of family dysfunction on aggressive behavior in children?
- Discuss the implications of the child’s gender in the study.
Oberle, E., Schonert-Reich, K.A., Guhn, M., Zumbo, B.D., & Hertzman, C. (2014). The role of supportive adults in promoting positive development in middle childhood: A population-based study. Canadian Journal of School Psychology, 29(4), 296–316.
The goal of this research was to examine the role of supportive adults to emotional well-being in a population of Grade 4 students attending public schools in Vancouver, Canada. Reflecting the ecology of middle childhood, we examined the extent to which perceived family, school, and neighborhood support relate to young people’s self-reported emotional well-being (N = 3,026; 48% female; Mage = 9.75). Furthermore, we investigated the hierarchy of importance among those support factors in predicting students’ well-being. As expected, adult support in all three ecological contexts was positively related to emotional well-being. School support emerged as the most important adult support factor, followed by home and neighborhood support. All three support factors emerged as stronger predictors than socioeconomic status (SES) in our study. We discuss our findings in relation to the empirical field of relationship research in middle childhood, and how our findings can inform educational practice.
Questions to Consider:
- Explain the relevance of supportive family relationships in middle childhood development.
- What are the indications of thriving in middle childhood?
- Describe the variables measured in the study and their implications for emotional well-being in children.