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Dev Psychol. 2000 Mar;36(2):220-32.

Effortful control in early childhood: continuity and change, antecedents, and implications for social development.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Iowa, Iowa City 52242-1407, USA. grazyna-kochanska@uiowa.edu

Abstract

The course, antecedents, and implications for social development of effortful control were examined in this comprehensive longitudinal study. Behavioral multitask batteries and parental ratings assessed effortful control at 22 and 33 months (N = 106). Effortful control functions encompassed delaying, slowing down motor activity, suppressing/initiating activity to signal, effortful attention, and lowering voice. Between 22 and 33 months, effortful control improved considerably, its coherence increased, it was stable, and it was higher for girls. Behavioral and parent-rated measures converged. Children's focused attention at 9 months, mothers' responsiveness at 22 months, and mothers' self-reported socialization level all predicted children's greater effortful control. Effortful control had implications for concurrent social development. Greater effortful control at 22 months was linked to more regulated anger, and at 33 months, to more regulated anger and joy and to stronger restraint.

PMID:
10749079
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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