The identification of infant predictors of childhood cognitive and behavioral outcomes is an important topic for basic and applied developmental psychology. The description of predictors is critical to the early identification of children "at risk" for developmental and behavioral disorders and to the optimal targeting of primary and secondary interventions for these children. Furthermore, evidence of continuity between infant and childhood abilities provides information that is fundamental to research and theories on the nature of human psychological development. Therefore, a priority has been placed on research that not only identifies new methods of infant assessments that will contribute to the predictive validity of infant assessment batteries but also examines the constitutional and environmental- caregiving mechanisms that may contribute to continuity between infant and childhood development. In this regard, though, insufficient attention has been paid to the potential importance of individual differences in joint attention skill development as infant predictors of outcome, either in research on infant predictors or in research on joint attention. This despite research and theory that suggests that infant joint attention skills reflect aspects of social-cognitive, as well as social- emotional competence and self-regulatory, capacities that may be expected to relate to both behavioral and cognitive outcomes in childhood. The proposed longitudinal study has been designed to address this important hypothesis, as well as to examine the degree to which the continuity between infant joint attention and childhood outcomes reflect caregiver and infant constitutional factors. One hundred twenty infants will be followed longitudinally, at four-month intervals, from 6 to 36 months of age. The data provided by this study may be expected to: a) improve early screening and diagnosis in infancy, b)advances the understanding of the integrated nature of social emotional and cognitive development in infancy and early childhood, and c) advance the understanding of the joint attention disturbance that plays a fundamental role in autism, as well as other forms of developmental disorders.
|Effective start/end date||8/1/99 → 7/31/05|
- National Institutes of Health: $228,352.00
- National Institutes of Health: $201,003.00
- National Institutes of Health: $196,934.00
- National Institutes of Health: $236,587.00
- National Institutes of Health
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