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01-11-2008 | Uitgave 8/2008

Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology 8/2008

Predicting Early Sexual Activity with Behavior Problems Exhibited at School Entry and in Early Adolescence

Tijdschrift:
Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology > Uitgave 8/2008
Auteurs:
Hannah-Lise T. Schofield, Karen L. Bierman, Brenda Heinrichs, Robert L. Nix, Conduct Problems Prevention Research Group
Belangrijke opmerkingen
Members of the CPPRG in alphabetical order include Karen L. Bierman (Pennsylvania State University), John D. Coie (Duke University), Kenneth A. Dodge (Duke University), Mark T. Greenberg (Pennsylvania State University), John E. Lochman (University of Alabama), Robert J. McMahon (University of Washington), and Ellen E. Pinderhughes (Tufts University).

Abstract

Youth who initiate sexual intercourse in early adolescence (age 11–14) experience multiple risks, including concurrent adjustment problems and unsafe sexual practices. The current study tested two models describing the links between childhood precursors, early adolescent risk factors, and adolescent sexual activity: a cumulative model and a meditational model. A longitudinal sample of 694 boys and girls from four geographical locations was utilized, with data collected from kindergarten through high school. Structural equation models revealed that, irrespective of gender or race, high rates of aggressive disruptive behaviors and attention problems at school entry increased risk for a constellation of problem behaviors in middle school (school maladjustment, antisocial activity, and substance use) which, in turn, promoted the early initiation of sexual activity. Implications are discussed for developmental models of early sexual activity and for prevention programming.

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