A cognitive-behavioral analysis of parental facilitation of children's social-cognitive problem solving

Maurice J. Elias, Michael Ubriaco, John Gray

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The present study used a case study framework to examine ways in which parental belief systems and parental teaching strategies interact to enhance children's social-cognitive problem solving and school adjustment. The focus of the investigation was to examine the robustness of several postulated typologies of interrelationship among the key variables, as well as antecedents and consequences of means-ends problem solving exhibited by children. Four intact families with second grade children were observed in the home as they participated in discussion and decision making concerning problematic social situations. The data suggested these major points: Parental behavior was generally consistent with their beliefs; parents could most effectively elicit means-ends verbalizations from children through direct questioning; families differed in the extent to which children's inputs into family decision making were valued and the degree of interparental discord concerning beliefs and strategies. The latter points suggest a reconceptualization of how parental variables can be linked to the development of social-cognitive and behavioral competence in children. Specific implications for theory and recommendations for research are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-72
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Applied Developmental Psychology
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1985

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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