Unpacking Authoritative Parenting: Reassessing a Multidimensional Construct

By Roberts, Marjory; Steinberg, Laurence | Journal of Marriage and Family, August 1999 | Go to article overview

Unpacking Authoritative Parenting: Reassessing a Multidimensional Construct


Roberts, Marjory, Steinberg, Laurence, Journal of Marriage and Family


This study examines the independent and joint contributions of three core dimensions of authoritative parenting-acceptance-involvement, strictnesssupervision, and psychological autonomy granting-to adolescent adjustment. A sample of 8, 700 14- to IS-year-olds completed questionnaires that included indices of authoritative parenting and a set of instruments assessing different aspects of adjustment. Behavior problems were related more strongly to behavioral control than to psychological autonomy granting. Psychosocial development and internal distress were more strongly associated with both psychological autonomy granting and acceptance-involvement than with behavioral control Academic competence demonstrated significant relations with all three parenting variables. Curvilinear and interactive relations between parenting practices and adolescent adjustment were observed, but the specific pattern varied as a function of outcome assessed.

Over the past four decades, a considerable body of research has accumulated on the relation between psychological well-being in childhood and adolescence and two fundamental aspects of parenting: control and acceptance. This literature has consistently shown that parental acceptance, inductive discipline, nonpunitive punishment practices, and consistency in childrearing are each associated with positive developmental outcomes in children (Maccoby & Martin, 1983). Since the early 1970s, this constellation of practices has come to be known as authoritative parenting, one of several prototypic styles of parenting identified in the seminal studies of Diana Baumrind (1967, 1971). Children who are raised in authoritative homes score higher than their peers raised in authoritarian, indulgent, or neglectful homes on a variety of measures of competence, social development, selfperceptions, and mental health (Maccoby & Martin, 1983). Several recent studies have applied Baumrind's model to explain variations in patterns of adolescent development, including academic achievement, psychosocial development, behavior problems, and psychological symptoms (e.g., Dornbusch, Ritter, Leiderman, Roberts, & Fraleigh, 1987; Lamborn, Mounts, Steinberg, & Dornbusch, 1991; Steinberg, Elmen, & Mounts, 1989; Steinberg, Lamborn, Dornbusch, & Darling, 1992; Steinberg, Mounts, Lamborn, & Dornbusch, 1991), and these reports find that adolescents, like their younger counterparts, benefit from authoritative parenting. Although the strong positive effects of authoritative parenting have been more consistently reported in studies of White, rather than nonWhite, youth (see, for example, Baumrind, 1972; Chao, 1994), no large-scale systematic studies ever have indicated that nonauthoritative parenting has more beneficial effects on adolescent development than authoritative parenting, regardless of the population studied.

Despite the breadth and consistency of these findings, most empirical studies of parenting practices and adolescent outcomes continue to focus on single dimensions of the parent-child relationship considered independently. They leave unanswered several questions about the precise nature of this relationship. Three questions, in particular, define the focus of the study presented here. The first concerns the effects of parental control, a construct that continues to evolve amidst debate over its conceptualization (Barber, Olsen, & Shagle, 1994). Although the distinction between psychological control-the relative degree of emotional autonomy that parents allowand behavioral control-the level of monitoring and limit setting that parents use-was articulated more than 30 years ago (Schaefer, 1965; see also Barber et al., 1994, and Steinberg, 1990), little empirical research has focused on the differential effects of these types of control. In light of existing theories about the potential impact of parental intrusiveness (e.g., an excess of psychological control) on the development of internalizing problems and the potential impact of parental leniency (e.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Unpacking Authoritative Parenting: Reassessing a Multidimensional Construct
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.