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30-10-2014 | Original Article | Uitgave 5/2015

Child Psychiatry & Human Development 5/2015

Conduct Problems in Childhood and Adolescence: Developmental Trajectories, Predictors and Outcomes in a Six-Year Follow Up

Child Psychiatry & Human Development > Uitgave 5/2015
Laura López-Romero, Estrella Romero, Henrik Andershed


Understanding youth conduct problems requires examination from a developmental perspective, analyzing distinctive pathways across childhood and adolescence, and identifying early predictors which will lead to specific adolescent outcomes. Bearing this in mind, developmental trajectories of conduct problems were identified from a person-oriented perspective, and using data collected from three waves over a six-year period, in a sample of Spanish children aged 6–11 at the onset of the study. Conduct problems showed five distinctive trajectories which were grouped into three major pathways in further analyses: Stable low, Stable high, and Decreasing. Associations with early personality and psychopathic traits, as well as with a wide range of adolescent behavioral and psychosocial outcomes were examined, revealing the Stable high group as exhibiting the highest risk profile. These results contribute to improving our knowledge about one of the most relevant problems in youth populations, and will help in refining interventions strategies by recognizing the developmental heterogeneity of the construct.

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