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Social-Emotional Adjustment of Post-Institutionalized Children from 12 to 36 Months of Age.

Rosas, Johana M. (2015) Social-Emotional Adjustment of Post-Institutionalized Children from 12 to 36 Months of Age. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Every year thousands of children are adopted into USA families. Many of these children are adopted from countries where the primary form of care is institutions. While much research has focused on adjustment in middle childhood and adolescence, little is known about post-institutionalized (PI) children’s adjustment in early childhood. The primary goal of this study was to examine the social-emotional adjustment of PI children during the first three years of life. Furthermore, this study examined the association between age at adoption and time in the adoptive home on children’s outcomes. Also, attachment and indiscriminate friendliness (IF) were examined in relation to children’s social-emotional outcomes. Adoptive parents provided demographic and adoption information and filled out the Infant-Toddler Social and Emotional Assessment (ITSEA), The Attachment Questionnaire (23 questions), and Chisholm’s Indiscriminately Friendly Questions. The sample included 179 children (99 females) adopted between 6 and 30 months of age from Russia (85%), Belarus (8%), and other Easter European countries (7%) and had lived in the adoptive families for 1-27 months (M = 12.83 months). PI children were compared to the standardization sample of the ITSEA on mean standardized scores and percentage of children in the “Of Concern” range. Overall, results showed that PI children had lower social-emotional problem scores and a lower percentage of children with extreme scores than the standardization sample of the ITSEA. Also, PI children did not differ on competencies and attention skills from the standardization sample of the ITSEA. Age at adoption was related to most outcomes, consistent with the literature, but not time in the adoptive home. In addition, better security of attachment was associated with less behavior problems. PI children’s better than expected functioning was surprising considering the social-emotional deprivation of the institutional environment in which these children lived for most of their lives prior to adoption and possible reasons for the unexpectedly normative scores for PI children are discussed.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Rosas, Johana M.jmr113@pitt.eduJMR113
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairMcCall, Robert B.mccall2@pitt.eduMCCALL2
Committee MemberCampbell, Susan B. sbcamp@pitt.eduSBCAMP
Committee MemberShaw, Daniel S. danielshaw@pitt.eduCASEY
Committee MemberPogue-Geile, Michel F. mfpg@pitt.eduMFPG
Committee MemberGroark, Christina J.cgroark@pitt.eduCGROARK
Date: 27 April 2015
Defense Date: 27 April 2015
Approval Date: 27 September 2015
Submission Date: 14 August 2015
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 72
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Psychology
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: No
Uncontrolled Keywords: Child Development, Psychology, Adoption Research
Date Deposited: 28 Sep 2015 01:46
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 14:30


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