Observation of early childhood physical aggression: a psychometric study of the system for coding early physical aggression
Article first published online: 22 MAY 2008
© 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.
Volume 34, Issue 5, pages 539–552, September/October 2008
How to Cite
Mesman, J., Alink, L. R.A., van Zeijl, J., Stolk, M. N., Bakermans-Kranenburg, M. J., van IJzendoorn, M. H., Juffer, F. and Koot, H. M. (2008), Observation of early childhood physical aggression: a psychometric study of the system for coding early physical aggression. Aggr. Behav., 34: 539–552. doi: 10.1002/ab.20267
- Issue published online: 30 JUL 2008
- Article first published online: 22 MAY 2008
- Manuscript Accepted: 27 MAR 2008
- Manuscript Revised: 26 MAR 2008
- Manuscript Received: 30 AUG 2007
- physical aggression;
We investigated the reliability and (convergent and discriminant) validity of an observational measure of physical aggression in toddlers and preschoolers, originally developed by Keenan and Shaw . The observation instrument is based on a developmental definition of aggression. Physical aggression was observed twice in a laboratory setting, the first time when children were 1–3 years old, and again 1 year later. Observed physical aggression was significantly related to concurrent mother-rated physical aggression for 2- to 4-year-olds, but not to maternal ratings of nonaggressive externalizing problems, indicating the measure's discriminant validity. However, we did not find significant 1-year stability of observed physical aggression in any of the age groups, whereas mother-rated physical aggression was significantly stable for all ages. The observational measure shows promise, but may have assessed state rather than trait aggression in our study. Aggr. Behav. 34:539–552. 2008. © 2008 Wiley-Liss, Inc.