, Volume 12, Issue 2, pp 84-91

Authoritarian parenting attitudes as a risk for conduct problems

Rent the article at a discount

Rent now

* Final gross prices may vary according to local VAT.

Get Access


This study examines the associations, and possible causal relationship, between mothers' authoritarian attitudes to discipline and child behaviour using cross-sectional and prospective data from a large population sample surveyed in the 1970 British Cohort Study. Results show a clear linear relationship between the degree of maternal approval of authoritarian child-rearing attitudes and the rates of conduct problems at age 5 and age 10. This association is independent of the confounding effects of socio-economic status and maternal psychological distress. Maternal authoritarian attitudes independently predicted the development of conduct problems 5 years later at age 10. The results of this longitudinal study suggest that authoritarian parenting attitudes expressed by mothers may be of significance in the development of conduct problems.

Accepted: 29 January 2003
Correspondence to Dr. A. Thompson