International Journal of Developmental Science - Volume 5, issue 1-2
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Individual human development is influenced by a multitude of systems, ranging from cultural processes, genetic and physiological incidents up to social interactions. How do these systems cooperate and interact during the course of human development? One of the main goals of Developmental Science is finding an answer to this question.
Since it exceeds the means of researchers from individual scientific disciplines to investigate the simultaneous biopsychosocial changes of systems and how they jointly contribute to the social and adaptive functions of human individuals, a new scientific approach is necessary that links the various traditional scientific disciplines under a biopsychosocial approach to describe individual human development: Developmental Science.
Developmental Science combines concepts and insights from scientific disciplines which hitherto used to independently tackle the research of human and non-human development. As an interdisciplinary approach it examines individuals across the lifespan with the objective of comprehending the development of individuals with different cultural and ethnic as well as biological background, different economic and cognitive potentials and under diverse living conditions. To facilitate the understanding of developmental processes it is also necessary to overcome the disadvantageous separation of “normal” from “abnormal” human development. Thus, the interdisciplinary field of Developmental Science comprises a holistic approach to understanding how different systems interact and influence development throughout life from genetic and physiological processes to social interactions and cultural processes.
International Journal of Developmental Science is especially devoted to research from the fields of Psychology, Genetics, Neuroscience and Biology and provides an interdisciplinary and international forum for basic research and professional application in the field of Developmental Science. The reader will find original empirical or theoretical contributions, methodological and review papers, giving a systematic overview or evaluation of research and theories of Developmental Science and dealing with typical human development and developmental psychopathology during infancy, childhood, adolescence and adulthood. All manuscripts pass through a multilevel peer-review process.
In 2007-2010 (Vol. 1-4) this journal was named
European Journal of Developmental Science. In 2011 its name was changed to
International Journal of Developmental Science.
Abstract: This study compared mother-infant interaction and childrearing patterns across Romanian families in Romania, first-generation Romanian immigrant families in Italy, and Italian families. The relations between acculturation and maternal beliefs and behaviors were also examined. Ninety-five mothers and their infants aged between 0 and 12 months participated. Mothers were videotaped interacting with their infants during free play, and were interviewed about their childrearing beliefs and practices. Results showed that Romanian mothers placed more emphasis on values and behaviors related to interdependence/sociocentrism, whereas Italian mothers more highly valued socialization goals and interactive behaviors consonant with an individualistic/independent orientation. The migrant mothers more…closely resembled Italian mothers in the importance attributed to stimulating children's cognitive competence, autonomy, and self-fulfillment, but no homogeneous pattern for maternal behaviors was found. Maternal beliefs and behaviors were not related in either group. While the migrant mothers were significantly more oriented towards participating in the host culture than towards maintaining their own heritage culture, no association between acculturation attitudes, maternal beliefs and behaviors emerged.
Keywords: culture, parenting, immigrant families, Italy, Romania
Abstract: Studies comparing associations between early literacy related activities and developmental outcome among ethnically diverse groups of children are scarce. The aims of this study were to: (a) document the differences in Turkish immigrant (n = 79) and German (n = 88) preschool children's home literacy environment (HLE), cognitive, and speaking proficiency test scores, (b) identify predictors of HLE and developmental status, and (c) disentangle effects of education and ethnicity on children's HLE and developmental status. Turkish immigrant children, on average, had lower HLE, cognitive, and speaking proficiency test scores when compared to their German peers. After controlling for parent education,…HLE predicted children's test scores in both groups. Similarities in predictive patterns emphasize positive effects of a stimulating HLE for young children's development, irrespective of the cultural specificity of dyadic bookreading. Our findings suggest that increased efforts should be made to develop culturally sensitive intervention strategies to facilitate access to print materials for children and to promote both mothers' and fathers' bookreading.
Keywords: mothers' and fathers' bookreading, socioeconomic status (SES), home literacy environment, cognitive and language skills, Turkish immigrant families
Abstract: New experiences, challenges, and opportunities inherent in biographical transitions are expected to foster the psychosocial development of individuals. Our study investigated, first, developmental gains in children's language competence, social support seeking, and self control following the transitions to kindergarten and school; second, whether native Germans, ethnic German repatriates, Russian Jewish and Turkish migrants differed in developmental gains following these transitions; and third, whether differences in mother's education, financial standing, or network contacts accounted for ethnic group differences in developmental gains. In total, 111 mothers of kindergarten-aged and 179 mothers of school-aged children were interviewed twice, before and after the respective…transition, with a one-year-interval. Results showed that, according to mothers' reports, children increased in language competence and self control after both transitions. The increase for some outcomes varied, however, between ethnic groups and was accounted for by differences in maternal education. Results underscore the importance of immigrants' education for the positive development of their offspring and of institutional opportunities in compensating for early disadvantages.
Keywords: kindergarten, school, transition, resources, psychosocial development
Abstract: This paper investigates the relationship between the frequency of parent-adolescent conflict and the quality of adaptation of immigrant Albanian adolescents and of their native Greek classmates. Aims of the present study were: (a) to compare the frequency of immigrant and non-immigrant adolescents' conflicts with their parents; (b) to compare the quality of their adaptation with respect to core developmental tasks and to their psychological well-being; and (c) to examine how parent-adolescent conflict is related to adaptation in immigrant and non-immigrant youth. These questions were investigated using two waves of data from a longitudinal study of immigrant students from Albania and…their non-immigrant classmates (N = 392, mean age 12.73 years). Frequency of conflict, self-esteem and psychological symptoms were assessed through self-reports. Academic achievement, conduct in school and popularity were assessed with multiple methods and informants. A complex pattern of relationships was found between the frequency of parent-adolescent conflict, on the one hand, and adolescents' quality of adaptation and psychological well-being, on the other, differentiated by domain of adaptation, and ethnic group.
Keywords: parent-adolescent conflict, immigration, adaptation, longitudinal study
Abstract: The present study concurrently analyzed risk and protective factors on the individual and the class level related to bullying and victimization in ethnically diverse schools. The sample derived from the pre-test data of a national intervention evaluation study in Austria (ViSC) and comprised 1450 students (48.8% girls) aged 11–15 (M = 12.31) from 77 classes and 11 schools. 748 students were native Austrians, 225 students had a Turkish background, 305 students originate from former Yugoslavia and 173 students were from other countries. Data were collected via internet-based questionnaires. For data analysis hierarchical linear modeling (HLM) was applied. At the individual…level being a boy and low responsibility were identified as risk factors for higher bullying scores. On the class level, smaller class size and poor class climate were related to higher bullying scores. At the individual level being Turkish and from former Yugoslavia were associated with lower victimization scores. On the class level, a positive class climate was related to lower victimization scores.
Keywords: immigrant youth, ethnic diversity, bullying, victimization, hierarchical linear modeling
Abstract: We investigated ethnic group differences in the association between social support, perceived discrimination and mental health in one adolescent and one preadolescent sample of immigrant children in Norway. The study is based on self-report questionnaire data collected in 2000/2001 from 286 students in 10 th grade with backgrounds from Turkey, Somalia, and Vietnam, and from 359 students in 5 th–8 th grade with origin in Turkey, Somalia, and Sri Lanka, collected between 2007 and 2009. The findings revealed three different patterns of associations between support, discrimination and mental health, with substantial ethnic group variation: One direct pattern, one mediating pattern,…corroborating the Rejection-Identification Model, and one moderating pattern. The results were discussed with respect to the ethnic groups' varied immigration history, out-group orientation, cultural fit, and visibility.
Keywords: discrimination, social support, mental health, contact hypothesis, rejection-identification model
Abstract: The current study investigated developmental trajectories of teacher-reported aggressive behavior and whether these trajectories are associated with social-cognitive development (i.e., aggressive problem-solving) across the first three elementary grades in a large sample from Switzerland (N = 1,146). Semiparametric group-based analyses were employed to identify distinct pathways of aggressive behavior across grades. Five distinct trajectory classes were identified: low-stable, medium-stable, decreasing, increasing, and high-stable. Children's aggressive problem-solving strategies differentiated the high-stable from the other aggressive behavior trajectories. The findings are discussed within a social-cognitive developmental framework.