Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program




Major Professor

Morris, Amanda

Second Advisor

Stamps, Leighton

Third Advisor

Boxer, Paul

Fourth Advisor

Frick, Paul


This study examined the roles of emotion regulation, negative emotional reactivity, callous-unemotional traits, and socioemotional competence (i.e., identity, self-esteem, communication skills, work orientation, empathy) in overt aggression in a sample of detained juvenile offenders. Clusters were formed based on type and level of overt aggression exhibited: reactive, proactive/reactive, and low aggression. The proactive/reactive distinction failed to provide differential relationships with dependent variables when compared to an overall level of overt aggression. Results indicate that adolescents high in overall overt aggression exhibit higher levels of callousunemotional traits and negative reactivity, as well as lower levels of selfconcept and self-esteem when compared to those low in overt aggression. Additionally, youth with high levels of both overt aggression and callous-unemotional traits displayed significantly lower levels of empathy. No significant findings for overt aggression and emotion regulation emerged. Implications for interventions with adolescent offenders as well as future research directions are discussed.


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