Date Approved

2016

Degree Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Psychology

Committee Member

Carol Freedman-Doan

Committee Member

Alissa Huth-Bocks

Committee Member

Catherine Peterson

Abstract

This study examined how parent-child relationships may facilitate children’s higher-order cognition. A cross-sectional design was used to examine the relationship between positive and negative parenting factors and both neuropsychological and parent-report measures of children’s executive functioning (EF), attention, and working memory. Participants included ninety 8- to 12-year-old children and their parents. Though parenting was largely unrelated to neuropsychological performance, several positive and negative parenting dimensions were associated with parent ratings of children’s attention, EF, and working memory. Relational frustration and parental involvement were robust predictors of child difficulties with inattention and EF, controlling for relevant covariates. Though the causal direction needs further investigation, results suggest that parent-based interventions for enhancing children’s higherorder cognition or reducing symptoms of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may benefit from improving parental involvement and reducing relational frustration. Moreover, the low agreement between parent-report and neuropsychological measures of EF, attention, and working memory has important clinical implications.

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Psychology Commons

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