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Sch Psychol Q. 2012 Sep;27(3):134-43. doi: 10.1037/a0029320. Epub 2012 Aug 13.

Parent discrepancies in ratings of young children's co-occurring internalizing symptoms.

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  • 1Department of Educational, School, & Counseling Psychology, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65211, USA.


We examined the agreement between mothers and fathers with regard to their children's internalizing symptoms and tested predictors of rating discrepancies. The clinic sample included 181 children (ages 3 to 8) and their mothers and fathers who were participating in a parenting treatment study for children with behavioral problems. Mother-father agreement for ratings of internalizing problems was found to be moderate and consistent with previous research. Regression analyses revealed that parental stress, but not depression, predicted some of the variance associated with mother-father rating discrepancies. A gender effect was also found such that parent discrepancies were larger for girls than for boys. Much of the variance associated with rating discrepancies was left unexplained. Implications for both research and practice are discussed.

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