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Parents’ Understanding of Siblings’ Conflict Goals in Early and Middle Childhood

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Parents’ Understanding of Siblings’ Conflict Goals in Early and Middle Childhood

Witwit, Ma-ab (2016) Parents’ Understanding of Siblings’ Conflict Goals in Early and Middle Childhood. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

This study examined parents’ understanding of their children’s conflict goals by interviewing 62 sibling dyads with their primary caregiver. Parents (M age = 40.54), older siblings (M age = 8.39), and younger siblings (M age = 6.06), from each family were individually interviewed and asked to describe the goals of each of the siblings during a recent episode of two recurring conflicts. Overall, findings revealed that when parents described their children’s conflict goals, they most frequently referenced instrumental goals (the concrete goals that appear at the surface level of the conflict), in addition to autonomy/ respect, control/ competitiveness, and conciliation/ connectedness types of goals (more abstract goals that at the root of the conflict). Within-family comparisons revealed that parents ascribed more autonomy/ respect and avoiding punishment goals to older siblings and more relative competence and conciliation/ connectedness goals to younger siblings; additional between-family comparisons were used to disambiguate the effects of chronological age and birth order position in accounting for these findings. Furthermore, results revealed that parents’ descriptions aligned with those of their children’s approximately half of the time, although both parents and children also described additional elements over 80% of the time. Results of this study provide insight into parents’ perspectives on their children’s conflict goals. Such understandings may be crucial in helping them to intervene effectively into children’s conflicts. Findings also illuminate areas where parents might need support in improving their understanding of their children’s conflict perspectives.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Education
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Witwit, Ma-ab
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:Child Studies
Date:December 2016
Thesis Supervisor(s):Recchia, Holly, E.
ID Code:982029
Deposited By: MA-AB WITWIT
Deposited On:05 Jun 2017 16:01
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:54
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