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Cool and hot executive function as predictors of aggression in early childhood: Differentiating between the function and form of aggression

Cool and hot executive function as predictors of aggression in early childhood: Differentiating between the function and form of aggression

Poland, Sarah E., Monks, Claire P. and Tsermentseli, Stella (2015) Cool and hot executive function as predictors of aggression in early childhood: Differentiating between the function and form of aggression. British Journal of Developmental Psychology, 34 (2). pp. 181-197. ISSN 0261-510X (Print), 2044-835X (Online) (doi:10.1111/bjdp.12122)

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Abstract

Executive function (EF) has been implicated in childhood aggression. Understanding of the role of EF in aggression has been hindered, however, by the lack of research taking into account the function and form of aggression and the almost exclusive focus on cool EF. This study examined the role of cool and hot EF in teacher reported aggression, differentiating between reactive and proactive as well as physical and relational aggression. Children (N=106) completed laboratory tasks measuring cool (inhibition, planning, working memory) and hot EF (affective decision making, delay of gratification). Cool, but not hot, EF significantly contributed to understanding of childhood aggression. Inhibition was a central predictor of childhood aggression. Planning and working memory, in contrast, were significant independent predictors of proactive relational aggression only. Added to this, prosocial behaviour moderated the relationship between working memory and reactive relational aggression. This study therefore suggests that cool EF, particularly inhibition, is associated with childhood aggression across the different functions and forms.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Paper debuted at the "17th European Conference on Developmental Psychology", Braga, Portugal, 8-12 September 2015.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Executive function, aggression, aggressive subtypes, prosocial behaviour.
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Education & Health
Faculty of Education & Health > Applied Psychology Research Group
Faculty of Education & Health > Department of Psychology, Social Work & Counselling
Related URLs:
Last Modified: 04 Dec 2017 11:12
Selected for GREAT 2016: GREAT a
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/14013

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