Academic journal article Indian Journal of Psychiatry

Goodness of Fit

Academic journal article Indian Journal of Psychiatry

Goodness of Fit

Article excerpt

Byline: Lakshmi. Sravanti

New York Longitudinal Study done by Chess et al. is one of the landmark studies in the field of child and adolescent mental health. It laid emphasis on unique dispositions of infants and led to conceptualization of the construct of 'temperament.'[1] They described what is known as 'goodness of fit,' a framework that helps in the assessment of a child in a given environmental context. The interactions between child and environment were formulated within this framework. Transactions between child and parents influenced each other's behavior bidirectionally.[2],[3]

Goodness of fit is at the heart of infant-caregiver attachment and various factors such as cultural values influence it.[4] When environmental opportunities and demands are in tune with the individual's capacities, it leads to optimal development in a progressive direction. Conversely, when there is a mismatch, it leads to maladaptive functioning.[3]

Every child is unique, and environment shapes a child's developing personality. Since parents constitute the immediate environment of a child, they play an important role in regulating child's behavior and providing supportive care when it is warranted. Like the fit of a lock and its key must be right for the combination to function, the fit of individual temperament and environment must be right for healthy outcomes. …

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