A contextual approach to the development of self-regulatory competencies: The role of maternal unresponsivity and toddlers' negative affect in stressful situations

Monica L. Rodriguez, Ozlem Ayduk, J. Lawrence Aber, Walter Mischel, Anita Sethi, Yuichi Shoda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

A prospective study examined the effects of maternal unresponsivity and of toddlers' own negative affect on the child's subsequent ability to use effective attentional control strategies in preschool. Maternal and child behaviors were measured in situations that varied in the level of stress to test the hypothesis that behaviors in high stress situations would be more diagnostic of children's subsequent self-regulatory behavior. As predicted, both maternal unresponsivity and toddlers' negative affect, particularly in a high stress as opposed to a low stress situation, predicted children's later use of ineffective attentional control strategies. Similarly, maternal disengagement that occurred contingent to toddlers' distress predicted ineffective attentional control strategies whereas maternal disengagement in response to toddlers' non-distress behaviors did not. The findings supported the utility of a contextual approach to understanding the impact of maternal and child characteristics on the development of self-regulatory skills.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)136-157
Number of pages22
JournalSocial Development
Volume14
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 2005

Keywords

  • Attentional control
  • Child negative affect
  • Contextual analysis
  • Maternal unresponsivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'A contextual approach to the development of self-regulatory competencies: The role of maternal unresponsivity and toddlers' negative affect in stressful situations'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this