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Conference Paper American Society of Criminology Annual Meeting

Parenting Practices and the Course of Pre-Adolescent Antisocial Behaviors


Publication date

19 Nov 2003


Children with high levels of disruptive and antisocial behaviors place a heavy burden on their families and communities. The presence of antisocial and disruptive traits is consistently associated with children and adolescents experiencing social and structural disadvantage and/or low socio-economic status. One of the key mechanisms thought to link disadvantaged social circumstances to problem child behaviors is the family environment, especially parenting practices. Furthermore, parenting practices in early childhood are considered to be crucial, as once antisocial behavior is internalized in pre-adolescents it can be resistant to change resulting in increased problematic behaviors in adolescence and adulthood. We use data from the first three waves (1994, 1996, 1998) of the Canadian National Longitudinal Survey of Children and Youth (NLSCY). The NLSCY is a large nationally representative sample of children from newborn to age 11. The analysis is limited to two age cohorts (ages 4-5 and 6-7 in wave 1; 8-9 and 10-11 in wave 3) with a total sample size of approx. 4,500. Levels of antisocial behavior are determined through a cluster analysis of four measures of aggression, hyperactivity, prosocial behavior, and misconduct. The results of the cluster analysis are then examined by their patterns over the three waves and by parenting and home measures at wave 1.


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