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Temperament Assessment in children: methodology combined hetero-report and observation of behavior in interaction situation.

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Rafaela Guilherme Monte Cassiano
Total Authors: 1
Document type: Master's Dissertation
Press: Ribeirão Preto.
Institution: Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Faculdade de Filosofia, Ciências e Letras de Ribeirão Preto (PCARP/BC)
Defense date:
Examining board members:
Maria Beatriz Martins Linhares; Lígia Ebner Melchiori; Silvia Regina Ricco Lucato Sigolo
Advisor: Maria Beatriz Martins Linhares

Rothbart\'s approach demonstrates the importance of child temperament in shaping the personality and the interplay between risk factors and protective mechanisms to development. New questions have arisen about the assessment temperament instruments in this approach concerning the need for a more comprehensive view of the child\'s behavior and the importance of studies that focus on the evaluation of vulnerable samples. The present study aimed to develop and test the applicability of a combined procedure for evaluating toddler temperament through questionnaire and observation of mother-child interaction in samples of children with typical development and development at risk concerning the prematurity. The sample included 10 toddlers, five toddlers were born full-term and five preterm toddlers, aged 18 to 36 months, and their mothers. Data collection was conducted in the child\'s home where were applied with the mothers: The Early Childhood Behavior Questionnaire and a semi-structured questionnaire about the child\'s temperament. Besides, a systematic observation in play-free mother-child interaction was performed. Data analysis of mother-child interaction included three systems that assessed: a) the early episodes of contact; b) dynamic activities; c) the nature of the activities. Besides two scales that assessed: a) maternal responsiveness, timing, rhythm, intensity, emotional tone, and direction of the interaction, b) enthusiasm, intrusiveness, quality of directions, anger or frustration, and quality of maternal care and oppositional defiant child. The verbalizations of the dyads were also analyzed. The observations were analyzed using the software Observer XT and analyzed in terms of descriptive statistics using SPSS (version 19.0). The results showed that the scores on temperament factors of the full-term toddlers presented the increasing following order: Negative Affect, Extroversion and Effortful Control. On the other hand, toddlers born preterm showed the increasing following order: Negative Affect, Effortful Control and Extroversion. Concerning the mother-child interaction, the episodes of contact initiated by the mother were predominant in both groups. The activity shared by the dyad was more frequently in full-term toddlers, while the activities performed by the toddler\'s with partial participation of mother was more frequent in the group of premature toddlers in relation to other dynamics. The mothers of full-term toddlers were more responsive than mothers of premature toddlers. The premature toddlers dyads had more intrusiveness mothers, anger or frustration and oppositional defiant toddlers than the full-term toddlers dyads. Systems used to evaluate the interaction allowed the analysis of interactive behaviors of dyads, besides showing the specifics associated with the toddler\'s temperament and maternal behavior. The combined model of temperament assessment was able to identify differences in the pattern of toddlers\' behavior with typical development and with the presence of biological risk of prematurity. The observation of mother-child interaction was essential to verify the interaction between the toddler\'s temperament and maternal behaviors and thereby observe possible biases in maternal report of child temperament. (AU)

FAPESP's process: 10/12905-0 - Temperament assessment in children: methodology combined hetero-report and observation of behavior in interaction situation
Grantee:Rafaela Guilherme Monte Cassiano
Support type: Scholarships in Brazil - Master