Maternal self-efficacy beliefs, competence in parenting, and toddlers' behavior and developmental status



This study was designed to examine parenting self-efficacy beliefs as correlates of mothers' competence in parenting toddlers and as predictors of toddlers' behavior and development. Sixty-eight predominantly middle-class mother–toddler pairs participated in this study. Mothers completed questionnaires, toddlers were administered the Bayley Scales of Infant Development (BSID-II), and each dyad participated in the Crowell Procedure, which is designed to observe parent and toddler behaviors in a semistructured laboratory context. Although domain-general and domain-specific parenting self-efficacy beliefs were not associated with parenting competence, domain-specific beliefs were significantly related to toddlers' scores on the Mental Scale of the BSID-II and several behaviors observed during the Crowell Procedure (Affection Towards Mother, Avoidance of Mother, Compliance, Enthusiasm, and Negativity). Implications of the findings are discussed. ©2003 Michigan Association for Infant Mental Health.