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01-04-2009 | Original Paper | Uitgave 2/2009

Journal of Child and Family Studies 2/2009

Age, Gender, and Ethnicity Effects on Parent–Child Discrepancy Using Identical Item Measures

Tijdschrift:
Journal of Child and Family Studies > Uitgave 2/2009
Auteurs:
David L. Carlston, Benjamin M. Ogles

Abstract

Objective assessment of child and adolescent behavioral and emotional symptoms is traditionally obtained from multiple sources. However, a substantial body of research indicates that parental and child reports provide significant amounts of contradicting diagnostic information. Although a large and growing body of research attempts to identify potential influences of discrepant reports, the current research improves upon previous research in three primary ways: using identical item measures, using expanded statistical analyses, and evaluating cultural influences on observed discrepancies. A total of 2,153 parent–child dyads completed ratings of child behavior and emotional functioning. Specifically, parents and children completed the Ohio Scales, an empirically supported, identical item measure. Generally, reporter agreement was greater than typically reported. Similar to previous research with clinical populations, parents reported greater levels of child problems than their children. While age was not associated with observed discrepancies, parents and daughters demonstrated greater discrepancies on fewer specific items while parents and sons demonstrated more pervasive yet less severe discrepancies. Additionally, Hispanic dyads demonstrated less discrepancy than did African American and Caucasian dyads independent of discrepancy analysis. Discrepancies must be measured using multiple statistical methods in order to understand patterns. Furthermore, discrepancy research must address key demographic factors (e.g., ethnicity, gender).

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