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Correlates of self-reported coercive parenting of preschool-aged children at high risk for the development of conduct problems

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This study examines the correlates of coercive parenting in a high-risk sample of 305 three-year-old children likely to develop later conduct problems. As parental coercion has been identified as a significant risk factor for future psychopathology, the study sought to identify modifiable inter and intra-personal factors most closely associated with coercion. Method: 

Key variables known to place young children at future risk, such as maternal mood states, current child behaviour problems, demographic characteristics such as low income, past mental health problems and parents’ sense of competence, were analyzed based on parent-report measures and clinical interviews. Correlational and heirachical regression analysis identified key predictors of coercion. Results: 

Three variables emerged as the strongest predictors of maternal coercion: self-efficacy, child behaviour and maternal depression. Demographic factors contributed little to the model. Conclusions: 

Enhancing parental self-efficacy, especially specific parenting tasks with disruptive young children has the potential to make a significant contribution toward prevention of future conduct problems.
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Keywords: conduct problems; parental coercion; self-efficacy

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2004

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