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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Attribution of maternal social cues in conduct disordered boys Flessati, Eugene William


The purpose of this investigation was to determine the extent to which conduct disordered boys attribute hostile intent to their mothers' behavior following maternal behavior that results in negative, ambiguous, or positive outcomes for the child. Twenty-four conduct disordered and 24 normal boys between the ages of 6 and 11 years were individually presented with a series of hypothetical scenarios that depicted interactions between the boy and his mother. Following each scenario, the children were assessed with respect to the attributions of intent they made regarding their mothers' behavior, as well as their verbal report of behavioral response toward her. Results indicated that conduct disordered and normal boys did not differ with respect to either the attributions they made regarding their mothers' behavior or their verbal report of behavioral response. Results also indicated that attribution of intent was directly related to verbal report of behavioral response. The results were discussed in terms of issues related to mother-child interaction and the specific methodology employed in this study.

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