Title

Changing correlates of preschoolers' emotion understanding

Date of Completion

January 2004

Keywords

Psychology, Developmental

Degree

Ph.D.

Abstract

The influence of family expressiveness, maternal emotion talk, and emotion regulation on emotion understanding was examined at 3 (N = 58) and 4 (N = 52) years. A specific model of influence was tested that proposed that at 3 years family expressiveness and maternal emotion talk would be most important for emotion understanding while at 4 years, emotion regulation would become more influential, with family expressiveness and maternal talk diminishing in importance. Overall, the model was not strongly supported at either age, but appeared to work better at 3 years of age. However, this result was influenced by the sex of the child. When examining boys' and girls' performance separately at each age, the model fit fairly well for boys' emotion understanding, but did not fit well for girls' emotion understanding. The findings suggest that the influences of family expressiveness, maternal emotion talk, and emotion regulation on emotion understanding change with age and are dependent on the sex of the child. ^