Date of Award

Spring 5-2019

Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program




Major Professor

Laura Scaramella

Second Advisor

Chris Harshaw

Third Advisor

Matt Scalco


Temperamental characteristics may distinguish which children are at greater risk for later psychopathology. In addition, parenting quality may interact with the association between temperament and behavior problems to increase or decrease externalizing or internalizing behaviors in children. This study examined whether mothers’ parenting quality moderated the associations between children’s temperamental fear and children’s behavior problems. The sample consisted of 143 low-income mother-child dyads who participated in various interactional tasks designed to measure mothers’ parenting and children’s temperamental fear. While children’s fearless and fearful temperament were not significantly associated with externalizing and internalizing behaviors, respectively, some significant associations emerged. Positive and negative parenting were negatively associated, negative parenting and fearful temperament were positively associated, fearful and fearless temperament were negatively associated, and internalizing and externalizing behaviors were positively associated. Finally, results from moderation analyses indicated no significant interaction effects of parenting quality and children’s temperamental fear on children’s problem behavior.


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