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J Pers Soc Psychol. 1997 Feb;72(2):408-19.

Children's normative beliefs about aggression and aggressive behavior.

Author information

  • 1Research Center for Group Dynamics, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor 48106-1248, USA. huesmann@umich.edu

Abstract

Normative beliefs have been defined as self-regulating beliefs about the appropriateness of social behaviors. In 2 studies the authors revised their scale for assessing normative beliefs about aggression, found that it is reliable and valid for use with elementary school children, and investigated the longitudinal relation between normative beliefs about aggression and aggressive behavior in a large sample of elementary school children living in poor urban neighborhoods. Using data obtained in 2 waves of observations 1 year apart, the authors found that children tended to approve more of aggression as they grew older and that this increase appeared to be correlated with increases in aggressive behavior. More important, although individual differences in aggressive behavior predicted subsequent differences in normative beliefs in younger children, individual differences in aggressive behavior were predicted by preceding differences in normative beliefs in older children.

PMID:
9107008
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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