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Dev Psychol. 2017 Oct;53(10):1811-1825. doi: 10.1037/dev0000382. Epub 2017 Jul 31.

Latent profile and cluster analysis of infant temperament: Comparisons across person-centered approaches.

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Department of Psychology, Washington State University.
Department of Child, Youth, and Family Studies, Center for Brain, Biology and Behavior, University of Nebraska- Lincoln.
Department of Psychology, Virginia Tech.
Human Development and Family Studies, School of Health and Human Sciences, The University of North Carolina at Greensboro.
Department of Psychology, Northern Illinois University.
Department of Psychology, University of Notre Dame.
Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Psychology, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Research Institute on Addictions, University at Buffalo, State University of New York.
Department of Psychology, Florida Atlantic University.
Behavioral Sciences Department, Johnson State College.
College of Natural Resources, University of Idaho.


There is renewed interest in person-centered approaches to understanding the structure of temperament. However, questions concerning temperament types are not frequently framed in a developmental context, especially during infancy. In addition, the most common person-centered techniques, cluster analysis (CA) and latent profile analysis (LPA), have not been compared with respect to derived temperament types. To address these gaps, we set out to identify temperament types for younger and older infants, comparing LPA and CA techniques. Multiple data sets (N = 1,356; 672 girls, 677 boys) with maternal ratings of infant temperament obtained using the Infant Behavior Questionnaire-Revised (Gartstein & Rothbart, 2003) were combined. All infants were between 3 and 12 months of age (M = 7.85; SD = 3.00). Due to rapid development in the first year of life, LPA and CA were performed separately for younger (n = 731; 3 to 8 months of age) and older (n = 625; 9 to 12 months of age) infants. Results supported 3-profile/cluster solutions as optimal for younger infants, and 5-profile/cluster solutions for the older subsample, indicating considerable differences between early/mid and late infancy. LPA and CA solutions produced relatively comparable types for younger and older infants. Results are discussed in the context of developmental changes unique to the end of the first year of life, which likely account for the present findings. (PsycINFO Database Record.

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