TitleThe Influence of Parental Socioeconomic Background and Gender on Self-Regulation Among 5-Year-Old Children in Norway
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsStørksen, I, Ellingsen, IT, Wanless, SB, McClelland, MM
JournalEarly Education and Development
Pagination1 - 22
Date Published12/2014

Research Findings: Self-regulation in young children predicts later social adjustment and academic success across cultural contexts. Therefore, it is crucial to identify factors that promote or inhibit behavioral self-regulation skills. In this study, we focus on gender and socioeconomic status (SES; parental education and income) as possible predictors of 2 types of self-regulation in Norwegian children: individual behavioral regulation (assessed directly using the Head–Toes–Knees–Shoulders task) and classroom behavioral regulation (rated by teachers using the Survey of Early School Adjustment). A total of 243 children age 5 (85% of those invited) participated. Results indicated that Norwegian girls outperformed boys in both types of behavioral regulation. In addition, parental SES related positively to girls' individual behavioral regulation but not boys'. Practice or Policy: The present study supports the idea that boys may be vulnerable to low individual and classroom behavioral regulation in certain contexts and cultures and that parental SES may influence girls' and boys' individual behavioral regulation differently. Future research and practice should look at interventions specially designed to stimulate and motivate behavioral regulation among boys in general and among girls with lower socioeconomic backgrounds.