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Int J Behav Dev. 2013 Jan 1;37(1):57-67. Epub 2012 Oct 11.

Bidirectional Relations between Temperament and Parenting Styles in Chinese Children.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of California, Berkeley.


The present study examined bidirectional relations between child temperament and parenting styles in a sample (n = 425) of Chinese children during elementary school period (age range = 6 to 9 years at Wave 1). Using two waves (3.8 years apart) of longitudinal data, we tested two hypotheses: (1) whether child temperament (effortful control and anger/frustration) at Wave 1 predicts parenting styles (authoritative and authoritarian parenting) at Wave 2, controlling for Wave 1 parenting; and (2) whether parenting styles at Wave 1 predict Wave 2 temperament, controlling for Wave 1 temperament. We found support for bidirectional relations between temperament and authoritarian parenting, such that higher effortful control and lower anger/frustration were associated with higher authoritarian parenting across time and in both directions. There were no significant cross-time associations between children's temperament and authoritative parenting. These findings extend the previous tests of transactional relations between child temperament and parenting in Chinese children and are consistent with the cultural values toward effortful control and control of anger/frustration in Chinese society.


bidirectional; parenting styles; temperament

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