The association of promised consequences with child compliance to maternal directives

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Abstract

Noncompliance is a primary reason parents seek services for their young children. Research on socialization suggests that warning children about consequences is associated with greater compliance. In the current study, we test whether promised consequences (i.e., promises of parental responses to subsequent child behavior), compared with directives alone, were more strongly associated with compliance. We also tested whether some types of promised consequences were more strongly associated with compliance than others. Forty White mother-toddler (age 17-36 months) dyads were video recorded in a 30-min behavioral analogue situation. Interactions were coded using a derived coding scheme. Promised consequences were not found to be more strongly associated with compliance than were directives alone using sequential analyses; how-ever, negative and immediate promised consequences were more strongly associated with compliance. Findings suggest that promising negative and immediate consequences for noncompliance may encourage compliance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)639-649
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology
Volume38
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2009

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ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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