Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Examining the context -specificity and multidimensionality of social support for children experiencing interpersonal stress
by Kim, Kerri L., Ph.D., University of Kansas, 2009, 72; 3369453
Abstract (Summary)

Although ample empirical evidence supports the unspoken popular and scholarly assumption that social support is beneficial for psychosocial functioning, the research findings are not consistent. The conflicting findings may, in part, be related to researchers' tendency to rely on methodologically narrow definitions of what is likely a multidimensional construct. Moreover, it may be that social support as a coping resource is context-specific and subsequently, more useful and effective in the context of particular stressor types. The present study, therefore, examined the role of different elements of social support as potential moderators of the relation between interpersonal stress and behavioral outcome in 276 school-age children. It was hypothesized that total social support would moderate the relation between children's interpersonal stress and outcome. It was also hypothesized that, while the elements of social support were predicted to collectively influence the psychosocial functioning of children exposed to interpersonal stress, the individual elements of social support would not be of equal importance in the moderating role. The results did not support the moderating role of social support—total or the individual elements of—but indicated a main effect of overall social support on children's adaptive behavior. Implications of the current results are discussed.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Jackson, Yo
Commitee: Boydston, Julianne M., Karpowitz, Dennis H., Kerr, Barbara, Roberts, Michael C.
School: University of Kansas
Department: Clinical Child Psychology
School Location: United States -- Kansas
Source: DAI-B 70/08, Dissertation Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Social psychology, Clinical psychology
Keywords: Children, Social support, Stress
Publication Number: 3369453
ISBN: 9781109315639
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