Income is not enough: Incorporating material hardship into models of income associations with parenting and child development

Elizabeth T. Gershoff, J. Lawrence Aber, C. Cybele Raver, Mary Clare Lennon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Although research has clearly established that low family income has negative impacts on children's cognitive skills and social-emotional competence, less often is a family's experience of material hardship considered. Using the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Kindergarten Class of 1998-1999 (N = 21,255), this study examined dual components of family income and material hardship along with parent mediators of stress, positive parenting, and investment as predictors of 6-year-old children's cognitive skills and social-emotional competence. Support was found for a model that identified unique parent-mediated paths from income to cognitive skills and from income and material hardship to social-emotional competence. The findings have implications for future study of family income and child development and for identification of promising targets for policy intervention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)70-95
Number of pages26
JournalChild development
Volume78
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2007

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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