Abstract: Rice, Simon; Fallon, Barry; Bambling, Matthew While the etiology of gender roles across the lifespan remains a matter for debate, conformity to masculine norms has been associated with poorer physical and mental health outcomes amongst men. This study reports data from two online samples of Australian men (Ns = 343, 525), focusing on age group differences for masculinity and depression. Consistent with prediction, cross-sectional data reported that conformity to masculine norms attenuated throughout the lifespan. Further, both samples indicated that the relationship between masculinity and depression increased with age. Findings are interpreted within the context of men resolving gender role-related conflicts across the lifespan.
Abstract: Murphy, Kylie A A program to help girls avoid chronic partner abuse was piloted as an elective program in 10 Victorian secondary schools. The program was based on the Dyadic Slippery-Slope model of chronic partner abuse. It aimed to build participants' skills in recognising and responding assertively to early warningsign behaviours by a partner. Five modules were delivered over one day: Choosing, Noticing, Responding, Ending and Bouncing Back. This paper reports on the results of a noncontrolled pretest to posttest evaluation, with a 3-month follow-up period. Seventy-five girls (M = 14.7 years) contributed preprogram and postprogram data. After the program, they demonstrated heightened awareness of the risks associated with warning-sign behaviours, increased self-confidence, decreased victim blaming, and more assertive intentions. Participants' assertiveness was related to their risk awareness, but only following the program. The program's focus on skill building is believed to have been crucial to its success. Although skills-based empowerment is a promising approach to preventing chronic partner abuse, more rigorous and extensive evaluation of this approach is needed.
Abstract: Liang, Vera X; Jackson, Alun C; McKenzie, Vicki L This study examined the specific impact of remembered childhood and adolescent teasing on different dimensions of body image in young adults. A total of 113 participants (43 men and 70 women) indicated that they had been teased about their weight or appearance. The results revealed that the frequency of being teased about one's appearance was the only significant predictor of appearance satisfaction in women. Overweight preoccupation was not predicted by weight or appearance teasing. For men, the perceived distress of appearance and weight-related teasing predicted appearance satisfaction and overweight preoccupation respectively. The results suggest that different types of teasing can have differential impacts on the body image of young men and women. The results identify the need for prevention and intervention programs to address the problem of teasing in late primary and early high school children.
Abstract: Dietze, Paul M; Sharman, Stefanie J; Powell, Martine B; Thomson, Donald M Typically, asking people to reinstate the context of events increases their recall of those events; however, research findings have been mixed with children. We tested whether the principle underlying context reinstatement applies to children as it does to adults. This underlying principle, encoding specificity, suggests that the greater the overlap between study context cues and retrieval context cues, the more information that people should recall. In the current experiment, four age groups (7-year-olds, 9-year-olds, 11-year-olds and adults) took part in an encoding specificity procedure. At study, participants saw cue- target word pairs in which the cue word was either a strong or a weak associate of the target word (e.g., ice-COLD; blow-COLD). During an immediate cued recall test, participants were presented with the same strong or weak cue words and new, extra-list cue words. Overall, children and adults recalled more targets when they were presented with the same cue words at study and test, regardless of whether the cues were strong or weak. This finding suggests that encoding specificity applies to children as well as adults. We discuss the implications of these results.
Abstract: Waters, Lea The aim of this paper is to review school-based interventions that have been designed to foster student wellbeing and academic performance by following a positive psychology approach that seeks to cultivate positive emotions, resilience and positive character strengths. Following the calls of the 21st century education movement for schools to incorporate student wellbeing as a focus of learning, the current paper outlines the positive psychology movement and reviews evidence from 12 school-based positive psychology interventions that have been systematically evaluated. The evidence shows that positive psychology programs are significantly related to student wellbeing, relationships and academic performance. The paper makes suggestions for the further development of positive psychology interventions in schools and explores the factors that could allow positive psychology to be extended, and more systematically embedded, into schools.
Abstract: Magor-Blatch, Lynne Introduced initially in relation to drug policy, 'zero tolerance' has become a catchphrase to describe attitudes and policies relating to drug use, violence and a range of antisocial behaviours. It has been used particularly within schools in the United States as a disciplinary policy since the 1980s. While broadly ascribed, zero tolerance is designed to send a message that targeted behaviours are not tolerated and will be punished. Zero tolerance assumes that swift and uncompromising action aimed at punishing the offender will result in 'sending a strong message' to other would-be offenders and deter others from similar antisocial behaviours. However, thirty years of research has shown zero tolerance policies to have failed the individual and the community, resulting instead in increased rates of misbehaviour and early referral to the juvenile and criminal justice systems. This has the potential to negatively impact on the person's mental health and future outcomes.
Abstract: Bowles, Terry; Kurlender, Martine; Hellings, Bridie This study investigated family functioning, family stage and eating disorder risk. A sample of 140 females (aged 18-59) completed a family functioning questionnaire (ICPS) and the Eating Disorder Risk scale (EDI-3). Consistent with previous research, cluster analysis identified two profiles of family functioning: an authoritative style (high intimacy and high democratic parenting, with low conflict) and an authoritarian cluster (elevated conflict scores and significantly lower intimacy and democratic parenting). The second independent variable of family stage comprised two groups: females living in their family of origin and those living in their family of choice. The ANOVA showed no interaction involving family functioning cluster and family stage. A main effect showed that participants in the authoritarian cluster experienced significantly more drive for thinness, bulimic symptoms, body dissatisfaction and eating disorder risk. There was no difference in eating disorder risk between females living at home or those in the family of choice. The findings have implications for therapists in demonstrating that independence from the family of origin does not prompt natural recovery from eating disorder tendencies. The findings provide some further evidence of the association between specific elements of family functioning (intimacy, conflict and democratic parenting) with eating disorder risk.
Abstract: Asassfeh, Sahail M; Al-Shaboul, Yousef M; Zuraiq, Wael; Alshboul, Sabri This study investigates the main English as a Foreign Language (EFL) learning difficulties Jordanian English-major undergraduates encounter from their perspective. For this purpose a questionnaire was developed and administered to 270 (50 male and 220 female) participants. The study addressed the four basic language skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing). The independent variables included gender, grade point average (GPA), and academic major. Ordered according to their difficulty, the skills were speaking, reading, writing and listening respectively. Some specific language learning problems are also discussed. Appropriate conclusions and recommendations are provided accordingly.
Abstract: Piteo, Alicia M; Kettler, Lisa J This cross-sectional study explored the moderating influence of friendship quality and gender in the relationship between psychopathology and different types of victimisation experienced by primary school children. Five hundred and sixty-six children (n = 264 males; n = 302 females) with a mean age of 11.61 years (SD = 1.10) in Adelaide, South Australia completed the Peer Relations Questionnaire, the Relational Aggression Scale, the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire and the Friendship Quality Questionnaire. Neither overall friendship quality nor gender moderated the relationship between either direct or relational victimisation and psychopathology. However, 'conflict and betrayal' moderated the relationship between relational victimisation and psychopathology. For high levels of conflict and betrayal the relationship between relational victimisation and psychopathology was stronger for boys than girls. Possibly, a particular aspect of friendship quality may be more protective in the relationship between different types of victimisation and psychopathology. Implications of these results and suggestions for future research are considered.
Abstract: Stanley, Peter In 1998, 12 elementary school students aged 11 - 12 years, who were living in a disadvantaged suburb in a New Zealand city, were comprehensively assessed and determinations were made regarding their risk statuses. Ten years later, nine of the participants were located and interviewed and the data were examined using interpretative phenomenological analysis (Smith and Osborn, 2008). Three resilience themes were discerned at Time 2: relationships, contexts of development, and personhood and identity. The combination of quantitative and qualitative methodologies at the two assessment points promoted the derivation of a resilience model that connects relational contexts to executive functioning and purposeful action. The investigation also prompted observations about the contribution of qualitative research to the study of resilience.
Abstract: Efreom-Lieber, Yael; Lieber, Paul S Elementary and secondary school leaders advocating remediation and prevention of student discipline problems are doing so in lieu of direct development of student self-discipline (Larson, Smith, and Furlong, 2002). This shift has lead to the use of zero-tolerance strategies towards discipline (Maxcy, 2002). In this article, zero-tolerance policies - in particular, the use of out-oschool suspension - is critiqued from three ethical theory perspectives. This research argues for alternate approaches to discipline (Jackson, Boostrom, and Hansen, 1993; Skiba and Peterson, 1999) based in classical ethical theory, with specific emphasis on social justice (Rawls, 1971). Implications on Australian school systems and educational psychological development are discussed.
Abstract: Bracks-Zalloua, Peggy; Gibson, Frances; McMahon, Catherine Fifteen per cent of Australian couples now experience fertility problems and many turn to assisted reproductive technology such as in-vitro fertilisation (IVF) to conceive their child. This study investigated gender differences in relationship satisfaction during the transition to parenthood, and the effects of gender and age on relationship and psychological adjustment at six-nine months postpartum, in a sample of IVF conceiving couples initially recruited from a private fertility treatment clinic in Sydney. The results revealed different patterns of adjustment for mothers and fathers, whereby mothers showed a significant decline in relationship satisfaction from pregnancy to early parenthood while fathers did not. However, fathers exhibited more consistent relationship concern than mothers in both pregnancy and parenthood, and also reported greater parenting stress related to interaction with their child. There were negligible differences between older and younger parents, suggesting comparable adjustment across age groups. While the outcomes of this research do not indicate problematic adjustment, for those professionals who might be working with families conceiving through IVF they do highlight some specific adjustment issues for mothers and fathers during the postpartum period.
Abstract: McKay, Jenny; Betts, Jennifer; Maruff, Paul; Anderson, Vicki The present study aimed to investigate the development of attention skills through middle childhood and to document developmental trajectories associated with tasks of increasing attentional demands. The sample comprised 57 children (aged 5-12 years) who were divided, according to age, into three groups. Performance differences between the groups were compared on two measures, each including four subtests of increasing complexity and tapping both speed and accuracy: CogState, a computerised measure, and The Contingency Naming Test, a paper-and-pencil test. We predicted that there would be: (1) improvements in performance with increasing age, (2) deceases in performance with increasing task complexity and (3) parallel increments in performance on computer-based and paper-and-pencil measures. The results indicated that there were rapid improvements in performance on both computer-based and paper-and-pencil measures between the ages of 5 and 8 years indicated by changes in both response speed and response accuracy. In contrast, more moderate improvements were identified between the ages of 9 to 12 years and occurred mainly in the domain of speed.
Abstract: Kamppi, Dorian; Gilmore, Linda The Bayley Scales of Infant Development, Third Edition (Bayley-III) and Stanford-Binet Intelligence Scale, Fifth Edition (SB5) were administered in a sample of 26 typically developing children (12 males and 14 females) aged 24-42 months. Children completed the assessments in two separate sessions, counterbalanced for order of administration. Scores on the two instruments were not significantly related, with the exception of the SB5 Knowledge score, which was moderately correlated with the Language score on the Bayley-III (r = .41, p = .04). Despite no other significant correlations, for 22 of the 26 children, scores were very consistent across the two instruments. Implications for test selection are discussed.
Abstract: Simmons, Nathan; Hay, Ian This research examined the interactions between friendship patterns, school achievement, coping skills, self-concept and the classroom learning environment for 182 early adolescents, mean age 13 years 5 months (47.25% male). Participants completed the Friendship Nomination Form. The second phase of data collection focused on adolescents with high or low friendship ratings, who then completed four social and two academic measures. The social measures were: (1) Friendship Quality Scale (FQS; Bukowski, Hoza, and Boivin, 1994), (2) Self-Description Questionnaire II-Short Form (Marsh, 1990), (3) Coping Strategy Indicator-Short Form (CSI-S; Amirkhan, 1990) and (4) What is Happening in this Classroom Scale (WIHIC; Fraser, Fisher, and McRobbie, 1996). Adolescents with more friends reported more companionship and help from friends. Those with fewer friends perceived their classroom to be less cohesive and less cooperative. Females reported more closeness and friendship commitment than males. Friendship patterns had a significant influence on students' English achievement but not their mathematics achievement. The implications of the findings for school professional are discussed.
Abstract: Walker, Karen; Badawi, Nadia; Halliday, Robert; Laing, Sharon This article reports mean scores on the Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development (Version III) for 211 randomly selected healthy term (>37 weeks gestation) Australian infants at one year of age. Mean scores were significantly different from standardised norms in all subscales except fine motor. Australian infants scored higher on cognitive and receptive language (p < .01) and lower on expressive language and gross motor (ps < .01) subscales. These findings raise questions regarding the validity of this test in the Australian population and suggest that the test be re-normed on Australian children for valid interpretation of scores in this cultural context.
Abstract: Mander, David; Bobongie, Frank This is a reflective paper grounded in practice. It addresses the nature of working alliances in education between colleagues from different cultural, professional and generational backgrounds. The authors are specifically concerned with discussing the significance of accessing peer/cultural support in education, in particular how one colleague mentored another and the way knowledge was exchanged during this process to increase awareness and understanding. This topic is considered in the context of supporting male Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students while they study and live away from home to complete their secondary school education at boarding school in Western Australia (WA).
Abstract: Al-Shaboul, Yousef M; Asassfeh, Sahail M; Alshboul, Sabri S Research suggests that gender and perceived language proficiency level are among the factors that may impact the strategies language learners use. This study explored the impact of these variables on learning strategies used by 111 English-major Jordanian students. The instrument was Oxford's (1990) Strategy Inventory for Language Learning (SILL). The study revealed that females opt to use strategies more frequently than males. Results also showed that the higher the proficiency level, the more frequent the strategy use. Metacognitive strategies were the most prevalent among the different strategy types whereas memory strategies were the least deployed. These findings are discussed and implications are outlined.
Abstract: Gilmore, Linda Accurate knowledge and positive attitudes within the community are important for the effective diagnosis, treatment and support of people with ADHD. Most previous research about knowledge and attitudes has focused only on professional groups and parents of children with ADHD. The aim of this study was to explore knowledge about ADHD characteristics and causes, and attitudes towards issues such as medication in the general population. Six hundred and forty-five members of the Australian community, all of whom were parents, completed a questionnaire. The findings showed that the core features of ADHD were well-known, but there were misconceptions and considerable uncertainty about many aspects. Most respondents failed to recognise the genetic basis of the disorder and its potentially lifelong nature. Fathers were less knowledgeable than mothers. Although most participants believed that ADHD is a genuine disorder and recognised the benefits of medication, the majority believed that it is diagnosed too frequently and that medication is prescribed too readily. The study concluded that, in many respects, the public is not well-informed about ADHD and suggested that the media may have an important role in enhancing community awareness of the disorder through responsible, sensitive and accurate reporting.
Abstract: Fletcher, Janet; Bloor, Kimberley; Crossman, Carla; Thornton, Jenna; Briggs, Ellie; Hawkins, Tara; Sammut, Stephanie; Cardwell, Kitri At the request of the National Executive of the APS College of Educational and Developmental Psychologists (CEDP), a survey was carried out with the aim of profiling its membership in order to better describe the nature of college membership when information is sought from its parent body, the APS, and to provide better services for its members. Of the 327 CEDP members contacted by email, 119 completed an online questionnaire providing demographic information and data concerning their professional practice, skills, involvement with the APS and professional development needs and preferences. The data obtained indicates that the CEDP contains an aging, predominantly female, city-based membership. Respondents consider they share many skills and competencies with other psychologists but do have a specialised knowledge base. They collaborate with colleagues from other Colleges but would welcome the opportunity to do this more. While they value the work of the APS they would like increased support by the APS in raising the profile of educational and developmental psychology. While the majority of members could find and access professional development (PD) relevant to their practice, a sizeable minority considered the costs involved excessive. The implications of these data for CEDP policies, especially with regard to recruitment and service provision, are discussed.
Abstract: Gilmore, Linda; Campbell, Marilyn The assessment of intellectual ability is a core competency in psychology. The results of intelligence tests have many potential implications and are used frequently as the basis for decisions about educational placements, eligibility for various services, and admission to specific groups. Given the importance of intelligence test scores, accurate test administration and scoring are essential; yet there is evidence of unacceptably high rates of examiner error. This article discusses competency and postgraduate training in intelligence testing and presents a training model for postgraduate psychology students. The model aims to achieve high levels of competency in intelligence testing through a structured method of training, practice and feedback that incorporates peer support, self-reflection and multiple methods for evaluating competency.
Abstract: Kinsella-Ritter, Angela; Gibson, Frances L; Wyver, Shirley The Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development, Third Edition (Bayley-III) is a standardised assessment used to assess the developmental functioning of infants and young children from 1 month to 42 months of age (Bayley, 2006a). The Bayley scales are recognised internationally as one of the most comprehensive developmental assessment instruments (Sattler and Hoge, 2006) used to examine the major facets of a young child's development (Bayley, 2006a). The primary purpose of the Bayley-III is to identify children with developmental delay and to provide information for intervention implementation (Bayley, 2006a). The domains of early development covered increased from two to five including cognition, language, motor, social-emotional and adaptive behaviour with the publication of the third edition (Bayley, 2006a). While the original Bayley scales were predominately used by psychologists, publication of later editions led to accredited use, within the Australian and New Zealand context, by developmental paediatricians, occupational therapists, physiotherapists and speech pathologists (Bayley, 1969; Bayley 1992; Pearson Clinical and Talent Assessment, 2009). Although the Bayley-III is more comprehensive and a broader range of professionals now use the scales little is known about the clinical application. The current study aimed to explore the use of the Bayley-III in practice and views on the current US norms. An online survey was conducted and the findings revealed that the majority of respondents were interested in Australian local norms; the predominant age range assessed was the 24- to 42- month-old group and the most common clinical group seen and assessed was children presenting with global developmental delay. While the majority of the respondents used the Bayley-III approximately once a month or more, at least one third used it less often. However anticipated use over the next 12 months indicated a notable increase from 30% currently using it once or twice weekly up to 65%.
Abstract: Cashion, Larry Theory of mind tests are regularly used in childhood research and clinical practice for autism spectrum disorders in Australia. Despite this, there is little empirical evidence that the tests used in the United Kingdom and the United States have validity for Australian children. Furthermore, many tests believed to assess 'advanced' or 'higher-order' theory of mind have not had their reliability or validity rigorously evaluated. In the current study, seven theory of mind tasks were administered to 216 Australian children aged 6 to 12 years as part of a larger research project. While Australian children performed similarly to previous research samples on some tasks, there were marked discrepancies on others. Despite these differences, the validity of using a three-factor structure of first-, second-, and higher-order theory of mind tasks was supported by subsequent confirmatory factor analysis. Methodological issues accounted for some differences between the Australian and previously reported data. However, there were also some cross-cultural aspects of the results that require further investigation.
Abstract: Connell, Tim; Hodges, Violetta The greater risk of mental health issues for all members of a family when a child has a physical disability is well established. Families' views of the type of psychological services that will be most helpful were surveyed. Parents of 69 children with physical disabilities (primarily cerebral palsy) completed a postal survey of psychological issues they had experienced in the past, value of any help received, and their descriptions of experiences with support workers that were either helpful or unhelpful to their psychological coping. Parents indicated strongly that the help for the psychological issues was helpful. Of all categories of support worker identified, the percentage of psychologists being helpful was highest. One distinctive quality of the parent-identified features of effective support services reported in this study is their simplicity. Parents want to be supported by workers who are caring, do their jobs well, provide good information about the issues and help them connect with other families.
Abstract: Mansour, Marianne; Martin, Andrew J The home and parental factors that predict achievement motivation are an important focus in research, because they are a clear point for potential educational and psychological support for students. The present study investigates the achievement motivation of high school students, in the context of parental and home factors such as home resources, in- and out-of-home parental assistance, parenting style, and parental involvement in the school. Among a sample of 100 Australian high school students, hierarchal multiple linear regression analyses were performed in order to determine the relative salience of the proposed home and parental factors predicting students' achievement motivation. Results demonstrated that over and above demographic factors such as age, gender and ethnicity, home and parental factors do indeed play a critical function in predicting student motivation and engagement. Specifically, the study reveals that home resources and parenting style are the most salient home and parental factors associated with key aspects of achievement motivation and engagement (planning, task management, teacher-student relationships - positively, and self-handicapping - negatively). These findings affirm the role of the home and parents in students' academic development. Implications for future research and practice harnessing the present findings are discussed.
Abstract: Romagnano, Stephanie R; Gavidia-Payne, Susana Behavioural problems in young children can be detrimental to the psychological well-being of their parents. The present study examined the effectiveness of a newly developed intervention in improving parental stress and parenting sense of competence for parents of young children with a developmental delay (DD), presenting with behavioural problems. The sample comprised 15 parents and 1 grandparent of children, aged between 2 and 5 years, with DD. Parents completed a questionnaire package at pre-intervention and post-intervention, including measures to assess parent stress and sense of competence. Paired sample t-tests revealed a significant decline at post-intervention in the total frequency of hassles associated with raising a child with DD, as well as reductions in stress associated with parents' needs. General stress and parenting sense of competence showed no significant post-intervention improvements. Correlation analyses revealed a negative relationship between parent stress and sense of competence, at pre-intervention and post-intervention. It was concluded that the intervention was useful for reducing the overall frequency of stress and the stress associated with the needs of parents raising a young child with DD. Findings have implications for the development of parental supports by early childhood intervention practitioners. Due to a number of methodological limitations, suggestions were made for future research.
Abstract: Finlay, Ann; Mejia, Johanna; Ricketts, Trudy In line with current research into changes in service delivery models, educational psychologists from Catholic Education, Parramatta, initiated a pilot project in 2005, to trial a solution-focused, consultative model of service delivery to schools. Three primary and two secondary systemic schools across Western Sydney participated in the project, the focus being firstly, changes in service delivery by educational psychologists from individual casework to solution-focused consultation, and secondly, the professional development of teachers. The intent was to encourage collaboration between special education and classroom teachers; to encourage a shift in their thinking and practice from problem to solution; and to improve their identification, assessment and intervention skills. At the same time the educational psychologists implemented a solution-focused, consultative model of service delivery, referral package and student learning profile. Independent consultants used a mixed methodology to evaluate the efficacy of the project. Findings from both qualitative and quantitative data revealed support from the participants for the consultative model in its ability to provide a more effective service for students with special needs and a comprehensive framework for empowering and developing their teachers. The role of the educational psychologist as a partner in the education process at the school level was considerably enhanced.
Abstract: Reddington, JM; Wheeldon, A This exploratory study investigated the screening of behaviour, and auditory processing and reading problems in the first school year, employing a sample of 74 children. A teacher behaviour risk index, which included (i) a Behaviour scale (internalising, externalising dimensions and inattention), (ii) a teacher Future Risk estimation, was found to be reliable and a valid predictor of behaviour, together with a parent-based behaviour scale, against the Personal-Social Behaviour sub-scale of the Pupil Rating Scale-Revised. Adding the teacher-based Behaviour scale to the child-based Performance Indicators in the Primary School (PIPS) did not assist reading assessment, however the PIPS scale was confirmed as a valid reading predictor. A teacher-based Central Auditory Processing Disorder (CAPD) scale was significantly correlated to teacher-based Inattention and Behaviour and, with the teacher-based Behaviour scale, significantly predicted reading. On its own it predicted reading better than phonological awareness. It was suggested that child behaviour, CAPD and reading profiles could facilitate joint parent-teacher at-risk referrals in Year 1, including mental health. Assistive listening devices were recommended to aid children's auditory processing. The study needs replication with larger samples.
Abstract: Care, Esther; Roberts, Erin; Thomas, Amanda This report outlines the usefulness and appropriateness of three commonly used tests of ability for Preparatory level (Prep) children in Victoria, Australia, from non-English speaking backgrounds. Traditional school readiness and ability tests are dependent on knowledge of the English language, and thus may not be valid tools for assessing students with limited English proficiency. Tests that measure both verbal and nonverbal abilities were administered to 32 children, 14 from English speaking and 18 from non-English speaking backgrounds. Differences between the two groups of children are reported with a focus on interpretation in the context of effect of English language proficiency on performance. The results indicate that student performance on a variety of tests is constrained by English language knowledge, rather than by actual cognitive ability.
Abstract: Bowles, Terry This research is a summary of the published research interests of Australian Educational and Developmental Psychologists over the past 25 years. The terms used in the title and keywords describing research published in The Australian Educational and Developmental Psychologist (AEDP) over the past 25 years were analysed. In total, 105 individual words or terms were derived from 233 articles published in the AEDP. These words and terms were used 707 times as title words and 820 times as keywords to describe the research of the journal. The most frequent individual title words were children (n = 70), adolescents (n = 44), assessment (n = 29), development/developmental (n = 28), and disability (n = 27). The reduction of these title words and keywords resulted in six categories: Stages of Development, Relating and Roles, Educational and Vocational, Presenting Problems-Clinical, Presenting Problems-General, and Methods and Practice. Analyses of the frequency of the title words and keywords led to the conclusion that many of the words and the subsequent categories were exclusively Educational and Developmental in definition, with a large proportion of the content of the journal also shared with other specialisations and areas of psychology. Finally, the title words and keywords were subdivided into 5-year periods and small, significant effects were found between the five time periods for some categories of keywords and terms. The differences were very weak and nonsystematic, trends indicating the relative consistency of the contents of the journal over time.
Abstract: Rossi, Luisa; Fletcher, Janet; Harvey, Robin Previous research has established a relationship between children's language development and their behaviour. The aim of the present study was to determine whether children's language ability influenced the degree to which their behaviour changed following participation in the PATHS (Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies) curriculum. Participants were 86 pre-primary children who attended two mainstream schools in regional Western Australia. Analyses of pre- and post-intervention behaviour and language measures found PATHS to be effective for improving the behaviour and social skills of children with language difficulties. Changes in children with better language skills showed a positive but non-significant trend. Although a relationship was found between children's general language skills and their behaviour at pre-intervention, changes observed in behaviour were not accompanied by changes in language skills at post-intervention.
Abstract: McMahon, Catherine; Trapolini, Tania; Cornish, Alison; Ungerer, Judy Studies investigating the impact of postnatal depression on later child cognitive functioning report mixed results. Some show ongoing effects of depression in the first postnatal year, others show no lasting adverse effects, yet others report effects only when the depression is chronic and coupled with additional risks to development such as low socioeconomic status. This study examined the impact of depression in the first postnatal year and subsequent episodes between one and four years postpartum in a sample of 92 mothers and their four year old children from a relatively high socioeconomic group. Children were administered the WPPSI-R at four years of age. Findings revealed only modest effects. Compared to those whose mothers were not depressed, children whose mothers were diagnosed with depression in the first postnatal year had lower verbal IQ scores, but there were no differences on the performance scale. There were also no differences between children whose mothers recovered after one year and those whose mothers experienced further depression between one and four years. Effects were similar for boys and girls.
Abstract: Hinton, Sharon; Sofronoff, Kate; Sheffield, Jeanie This controlled trial of a teacher training intervention aimed to increase teacher competence in managing the problem behaviours associated with Asperger's syndrome, as manifested in a classroom setting. All teacher-participants currently managed a student with Asperger's syndrome in an inclusive classroom setting. Measures were taken on two occasions: pre-workshop and 6-week follow-up. Variables of interest were number of problem behaviours, success of teacher strategies used to manage problem behaviours and teacher self-efficacy in managing behaviours. Qualitative data assessing both the utility of the workshop and effectiveness of the individual management strategies was also gathered. At 6-week follow up, teachers reported increased confidence in their ability to manage the student with Asperger's syndrome, fewer problem behaviours displayed by the student and increased success in using strategies to manage the student in the classroom. The utility of both the workshop itself and individual management strategies were also endorsed by all teacher-participants. Suggestions for future research and limitation of the study are also discussed.
Abstract: Zago, David; Rosoman, Nick; Shum, David; O'Callaghan, Michael; Lesley, Anthony This study aimed to compare children with different ADHD subtypes and controls on measures of attention, and to examine the relationships between measures of attention and reading and spelling ability. Thirty-eight children with ADHD and sixteen controls were administered tests of four components of attention (viz., attention span, focused attention, selective attention and shifting attention) and two subtests (viz., reading and spelling) from the WRAT-3. The children with ADHD-Combined subtype were found to show deficits in attention span and focused attention, while the children with ADHD- Inattentive subtype were found to show deficits in shifting attention, and subtler deficits in attention span and focused attention. Measures of attention span were found to be significant predictors of reading ability, and measures of attention span and selective attention were found to be significant predictors of spelling ability. These results suggest that different ADHD subtypes show different patterns of attentional problems that have different neuroanatomical bases. Furthermore, academic problems in children with ADHD may be related to their attentional problems.
Abstract: Mergler, Amanda G; Spooner-Lane, Rebecca An examination of recent education policy and research demonstrates that the development of personal and emotional competence amongst Australian school students is a national priority (Commonwealth of Australia, 2005; Lewis and Frydenberg, 2002; Reid, 2006). In an attempt to determine whether high-schools are indeed supporting the personal and emotional development of young people, the present study investigated personal responsibility, emotional intelligence and self-esteem among a sample of year 11 public (n = 274) and private (n = 124) school students. The study found that all participants demonstrated high levels of personal responsibility and emotional intelligence, with no significant differences between the public and private school. Public and private school participants significantly differed on self-esteem, with private school participants reporting high levels of self-esteem (M = 30.36) and public school participants (M = 26.92) reporting moderate levels of self-esteem. It is sometimes assumed that private schools facilitate better developmental outcomes among students than public schools. Whilst findings are limited to results obtained from one public and one private school, the current study did not find evidence to support that the personal and emotional development of students is hindered in a public school environment.