Does executive function mediate the path from mothers’ depressive symptoms to young children’s problem behaviors?
Journal of Experimental Child Psychology
MetadataShow full item record
Roman, G., Ensor, R., & Hughes, C. (2015). Does executive function mediate the path from mothers’ depressive symptoms to young children’s problem behaviors?. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 142 158-170. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jecp.2015.09.022
Background: This study investigates the mediation role played by children’s executive function in the relationship between exposure to mild maternal depressive symptoms and problem behaviors. Method: At ages 2, 3 and 6, 143 children completed executive function tasks and a verbal ability test. Mothers completed the Beck Depression Inventory at each time-point and teachers completed the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire at child age 6. Results: Longitudinal autoregressive mediation models showed a mediation effect that was significant and quite specific: executive function (and not verbal ability) at age 3 mediated the path between mothers’ depressive symptoms (but not general social disadvantage) at the first time-point and children’s externalizing and internalizing problems at age 6. Conclusion: Improving children’s executive functioning might protect them against the adverse effects of exposure to maternal depressive symptoms.
executive function (EF), maternal depression, externalizing problems, internalizing problems, longitudinal analysis, externalising problems, internalising problems
This research was funded by a grant to Claire Hughes from the Economic and Social Research Council (ref: ES/D00554X/1). We thank the families who participated in the Toddlers Up study.
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jecp.2015.09.022
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/251307
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0
Licence URL: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Recommended or similar items
The following licence files are associated with this item: