Date of Award:


Document Type:


Degree Name:

Master of Science (MS)



Committee Chair(s)

Gretchen A. Gimpel


Gretchen A. Gimpel


Melanie Domenech Rodriguez


Pablo Chavajay


Externalizing behavior problems during early childhood are fairly common, with approximately 10% to 15% of young children exhibiting at least mild to moderate disruptive behaviors. Of great significance, disruptive behaviors persist beyond early childhood for a substantial number of children and are related to impaired functioning 111 for children and families. Parent discipline and parent stress are two variables that have been examined in relation to children's disruptive behaviors. While a significant body of research has documented the association between broad parental discipline strategies and behavior problems during early childhood, little research attention has been devoted to specific discipline techniques that may be related to disruptive behaviors. This study surveyed 30 parents of children with behavior problems and 57 parents of children without behavior problems about the discipline techniques they use with their preschool children. The relationships between the specific techniques parents use with their young children, parents' perceived stress level, and parent-reported child behavior problems were examined. Telling the child "no," corrective feedback, lecturing, and scolding were the discipline techniques parents reported using most often. The discipline techniques of corrective feedback and threats as well as parent stress emerged as significant predictors of disruptive behaviors. Conclusions and clinical implications of these findings are provided.



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