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The influence of intellectual stimulation on the cognitive functioning of high-risk preschoolers : implications for the transmission of risk across generations

Title:

The influence of intellectual stimulation on the cognitive functioning of high-risk preschoolers : implications for the transmission of risk across generations

Saltaris, Christina (1999) The influence of intellectual stimulation on the cognitive functioning of high-risk preschoolers : implications for the transmission of risk across generations. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

The present study explored the role of intellectual stimulation as a potential mediating variable in the relationship between risk status within the parent generation and outcome in the offspring generation. Two main questions were addressed: (a) Within a high-risk sample, to what extent does intellectual stimulation, measured as maternal teaching style and quality of the home environment, influence the cognitive functioning of preschool-age children? (b) Does maternal childhood risk status predict the quality of maternal teaching and home environment? These questions were examined within a subsample of high-risk mothers and their preschool-age children from the Concordia High Risk Project, a twenty-year longitudinal investigation of lower SES individuals identified in childhood as being highly aggressive and/or withdrawn. These individuals have been shown to be at risk for various health and psychosocial difficulties during childhood, adolescence and early adulthood. Recently, evidence of a process of transfer of risk across generations has been gathered. Controlling for maternal education, current SES, and parenting stress, parental intellectual stimulation was shown to predict scores on a standardized measure of children's intellectual functioning. Further, mothers' childhood aggression directly predicted their teaching style while interacting with their offspring, suggesting continuity in problematic interpersonal style. In addition, both childhood aggression and social withdrawal indirectly threatened optimal home environment, by contributing to a pathway of psychosocial difficulties experienced by mothers. The findings are discussed in terms of their implications for the study of pathways through which risk status is transmitted from one generation to the next.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Psychology
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Saltaris, Christina
Pagination:xi, 152 leaves ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Theses (M.A.)
Program:Psychology
Date:1999
Thesis Supervisor(s):Serbin, Lisa A
ID Code:811
Deposited By:Concordia University Libraries
Deposited On:27 Aug 2009 13:14
Last Modified:08 Dec 2010 10:16
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