Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)


Family Consumer Human Development

Department name when degree awarded

Family and Human Development

Committee Chair(s)

J. Craig Peery


J. Craig Peery


In order to dissect social behaviors into their smallest components, five interactions, each involving one neonate and one adult, were video taped and kinescoped into 16mm black and white film exposed at 24 frames per second. The film was analyzed frame by frame and all starts, stops, and changes in direction of movements were scored. Adult movement durations were significantly shorter during vocalization and longer during nonvocalization. Each infant and adult body part had its own characteristic movement rate. Almost two-thirds of the dyadic movements were interactionally synchronous and most of the synchronization occurred during vocalization. It is suggested that this behavior comprises an interactional code, innately biased to encourage mutual attachment between parents and infants. Further, it is suggested that the neonate is continually decoding incoming family socialization messages and encoding and relaying her/his own temperament messages which may or may not be harmonious with the overall family temperament.