Verbal punishment is not associated with such effects, especially when it is accompanied by emotional support from moms. In addition, 1-year-olds' fussiness predicted spanking and verbal punishment at ages 1, 2, and 3.
The study, which explored whether mothers' behaviors lead to problematic behavior in children, whether children's challenging behaviors elicit harsher discipline, or both, appears in the September/October 2009 issue of the journal Child Development. It was conducted by researchers at Duke University, the University of Missouri-Columbia, the University of South Carolina, Columbia University, Harvard University, and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Beliefs on spanking vary across cultures. In this study, the researchers looked at more than 2,500 exclusively low-income White, African American, and Mexican-American mothers and their young children, interviewing and observing them at home when the children were 1, 2, and 3 years old. All participants' family incomes were at or below the federal poverty level.
Using their own interpretations of spanking, mothers reported how often anyone in the home had spanked their children in the past week. Researchers also made in-home observations of how often mothers verbally punished (scolded, yelled, or made negative comments) their children during the visits.
The study found that African American children were spanked and verbally punished significantly more than the other children in the study. The authors speculated that this may be due to cultural factors, such as belief in the importance of children's respect for elders and in the value of physical discipline to instill that respect. Moreover, some African American mothers say that in preparing their children for a harsh, physically dangerous, and racially discriminating world, there is little room for error in their childrearing.
The authors also uncovered information about the effects of those types of discipline.
"Our findings clearly indicate that spanking affects children's development," according to Lisa J. Berlin, research scientist at the Center for Child and Family Policy at Duke University and the study's lead author. Specifically, children who were spanked more often at 1 behaved more aggressively when they were 2 and had lower scores on tests measuring thinking skills when they were 3. These findings held up even after taking into consideration such family characteristics as mothers' race and ethnicity, age, and education; family income and structure; and the children's gender. The study also found that children who were more aggressive at age 2 and had lower cognitive development scores at ages 1 and 2 were not spanked more at ages 2 and 3. "So the mothers' behaviors look more influential than the children's," said Berlin.
Unlike spanking, however, verbal punishment alone didn't affect either children's aggression or their cognitive development. But interestingly, when verbal punishment was accompanied by emotional support from moms, the children did better on the tests of cognitive ability.
The study was funded by the National Institute of Mental Health.
Summarized from Child Development, Vol. 80, Issue 5, Correlates and Consequences of Spanking and Verbal Punishment for Low-Income White, African American, and Mexican American Toddlers by Berlin, LJ (Duke University), Ipsa, JM, and Fine, MA (University of Missouri-Columbia), Malone, PS (University of South Carolina), Brooks-Gunn, J, and Bracy-Smith, C (Columbia University), Ayoub, C (Harvard University), and Bai, Y (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill). Copyright 2009 The Society for Research in Child Development, Inc. All rights reserved.
Sarah Hutcheon | EurekAlert!
Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung
Scientists reveal source of human heartbeat in 3-D
07.08.2017 | University of Manchester
Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.
As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...
Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.
Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...
For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.
While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...
An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.
The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...
A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...
16.08.2017 | Event News
04.08.2017 | Event News
26.07.2017 | Event News
21.08.2017 | Medical Engineering
21.08.2017 | Materials Sciences
21.08.2017 | Life Sciences