Parental Discipline Reactions to Child Noncompliance and Compliance: Association with Parent–Child Aggression Indicators

Academic Article


  • The present investigation examined whether indicators of parent–child aggression (PCA), including two measures of child abuse potential as well as measures of punishment intentions, use of physical aggression with children, and harsh parenting style, were associated with responses to child noncompliance and compliance on an analog task. Prior research suggests abusive parents demonstrate harsh reactions to child noncompliance but results are more mixed on whether abuse risk parents evidence poor response to child compliance. However, the existing research has relied heavily on methods susceptible to participant response distortion. Analog measures evaluate concepts in a manner that is analogous to the behavior of interest in a way that is less subject to distortion. A new analog procedure, the Response Analog to Child Compliance Task, was utilized to determine parental responses to noncompliance and compliance situations. The present investigation involved three parent samples to evaluate parent analog responses to both child compliance and noncompliance. Overall, this investigation supports that parents evidencing greater PCA risk selected harsher responses to noncompliant child behavior, but the findings were more limited regarding parent responses to child compliance. Results from the three samples imply that perhaps those with higher PCA risk may be likely to also show poorer response to compliant child behavior; however, further research is needed with additional high risk samples, preferably adopting alternatives to self-report methods that are less vulnerable to respondent bias.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Rodriguez CM
  • Start Page

  • 1363
  • End Page

  • 1374
  • Volume

  • 25
  • Issue

  • 4