Influences of Race and Family Environment on Child Hyperactivity and Antisocial Behavior



Using data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, latent growth curve modeling was used to examine relationships between trajectories of child hyperactivity and antisocial behavior symptoms for African Americans (n= 680), European Americans (n= 1195), and Hispanics (n= 432). A systematic examination of predictors of, and interrelationships between, these trajectories was tested based on two distinct models of family influences in the development of child behavior problems. Overall, child hyperactivity mediated the effects of family environment on child antisocial behavior, but with key racial differences. The results indicate the importance of conceptualizing patterns of family interaction as adaptive responses to the environment, rather than individual developmental interactions.