Reactive and Proactive Aggression: Cross-informant Agreement and the Clinical Utility of Different Informants

  • Thomas H. Ollendick
  • Matthew A. Jarrett
  • Jennifer C Wolff
  • Angela Scarpa
Article

Abstract

The current study examined cross-informant agreement and clinical utility of parent and teacher ratings of reactive and proactive aggression (two functions of aggression) in the prediction of aggressive and rule-breaking behavior (two forms of aggressive behavior) in a clinically-heterogeneous referred sample. Reactive and proactive measures were significantly related to one another within informant. Furthermore, the reactive and proactive measures of aggression were significantly related across informants and resulted in differential predictions of emotion-focused aggressive and goal-directed rule-breaking behaviors in home and school settings. Both reactive and proactive functions of aggression predicted aggressive acts that were more emotion-focused, whereas only the proactive function of aggression predicted instrumental acts of aggression. The current findings suggest that setting-specific reports of functions and forms of aggressive behavior are valuable and that it may be premature to abandon the reactive and proactive aggression distinction.

Keywords

Reactive Proactive Aggression Parent Teacher 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Thomas H. Ollendick
    • 1
  • Matthew A. Jarrett
    • 1
  • Jennifer C Wolff
    • 1
  • Angela Scarpa
    • 1
  1. 1.Child Study Center, Department of PsychologyVirginia Polytechnic Institute and State UniversityBlacksburgUSA

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