Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry (J CHILD PSYCHOL PSYC )

Publisher: Association for Child Psychology and Psychiatry, Blackwell Publishing


The Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry is internationally recognised to be the leading journal covering both child and adolescent psychology and psychiatry. Articles published include experimental and developmental studies, especially those relating to developmental psychopathology and the developmental disorders. An important function of the Journal is to bring together empirical research, clinical studies and reviews of high quality arising from different theoretical perspectives.

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  • Website
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry and Allied Disciplines, The website
  • Other titles
    Journal of child psychology and psychiatry and allied disciplines, Journal of child psychology and psychiatry
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  • Material type
    Periodical, Internet resource
  • Document type
    Journal / Magazine / Newspaper, Internet Resource

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Blackwell Publishing

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    • See Wiley-Blackwell entry for articles after February 2007
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    • 'Blackwell Publishing' is an imprint of 'Wiley-Blackwell'
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Publications in this journal

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    ABSTRACT: Background: Oral language skills in the preschool and early school years are critical to educational success and provide the foundations for the later development of reading comprehension. Methods: In a randomized controlled trial, 180 children from 15 UK nursery schools (n = 12 from each setting; M(age) = 4;0) were randomly allocated to receive a 30-week oral language intervention or to a waiting control group. Children in the intervention group received 30 weeks of oral language intervention, beginning in nursery (preschool), in three group sessions per week, continuing with daily sessions on transition to Reception class (pre-Year 1). The intervention was delivered by nursery staff and teaching assistants trained and supported by the research team. Following screening, children were assessed preintervention, following completion of the intervention and after a 6-month delay. Results: Children in the intervention group showed significantly better performance on measures of oral language and spoken narrative skills than children in the waiting control group immediately after the 30 week intervention and after a 6 month delay. Gains in word-level literacy skills were weaker, though clear improvements were observed on measures of phonological awareness. Importantly, improvements in oral language skills generalized to a standardized measure of reading comprehension at maintenance test. Conclusions: Early intervention for children with oral language difficulties is effective and can successfully support the skills, which underpin reading comprehension.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 11/2012; 54(3):280-290.
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    ABSTRACT: Deficits in joint attention (JA) and joint engagement (JE) represent a core problem in young children with autism as these affect language and social development. Studies of parent-mediated and specialist-mediated JA-intervention suggest that such intervention may be effective. However, there is little knowledge about the success of the intervention when done in preschools. Assess the effects of a preschool-based JA-intervention. 61 children (48 males) with autistic disorder (29-60 months) were randomized to either 8 weeks of JA-intervention, in addition to their preschool programs (n = 34), or to preschool programs only (n = 27). The intervention was done by preschool teachers with weekly supervision by trained counselors from Child and Adolescent Mental Health Clinics (CAMHC). Changes in JA and JE were measured by blinded independent testers using Early Social Communication Scale (ESCS) and video taped preschool teacher-child and mother-child play at baseline and post-intervention. NCT00378157. Intention-to-treat analysis showed significant difference between the intervention and the control group, with the intervention group yielding more JA initiation during interaction with the preschool teachers. The effect generalized to significantly longer duration of JE with the mothers. This is the first randomized study to show positive and generalized effects of preschool-based JA-intervention.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 01/2012; 53:97-105.
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    ABSTRACT: Inner speech has been linked to higher-order cognitive processes including 'theory of mind', self-awareness and executive functioning, all of which are impaired in autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Individuals with ASD, themselves, report a propensity for visual rather than verbal modes of thinking. This study explored the extent to which children with ASD used inner speech or visual imagery to support recall from short-term memory. Twenty-five children with ASD and 20 comparison children with moderate learning disabilities completed an immediate serial recall task, in which stimuli consisted of items with either phonologically similar features, visuo-spatially similar features or control items which were neither visuo-spatially nor phonologically similar. ASD and comparison participants, with verbal mental ages above 7 years, recalled phonologically similar stimuli less well than control stimuli, indicating that both groups were using inner speech to recode visually presented information into a phonological code. In contrast, those participants with verbal mental ages below 7 years, whether with ASD or not, recalled visuo-spatially similar stimuli less well than control stimuli, indicating visual rather than phonological coding. This developmental pattern mirrors that found in typically developing children. Under experimental conditions, individuals with ASD use inner speech to the same extent as individuals without ASD of a comparable mental age.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 02/2008; 49(1):51-8.
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    ABSTRACT: Three groups of children are involved in bullying: victims, bullies and bully-victims who are both bullies and victims of bullying. Understanding the origins of these groups is important since they have elevated emotional and behavioural problems, especially the bully-victims. No research has examined the genetic and environmental influences on these social roles. Mother and teacher reports of victimisation and bullying were collected in a nationally representative cohort of 1,116 families with 10-year-old twins. Model-fitting was used to examine the relative influence of genetics and environments on the liability to be a victim, a bully or a bully-victim. Twelve percent of children were severely bullied as victims, 13% were frequent bullies, and 2.5% were heavily involved as bully-victims. Genetic factors accounted for 73% of the variation in victimisation and 61% of the variation in bullying, with the remainder explained by environmental factors not shared between the twins. The covariation between victim and bully roles (r = .25), which characterises bully-victims, was accounted for by genetic factors only. Some genetic factors influenced both victimisation and bullying, although there were also genetic factors specific to each social role. Children's genetic endowments, as well as their surrounding environments, influence which children become victims, bullies and bully-victims. Future research identifying mediating characteristics that link the genetic and environmental influences to these social roles could provide targets for intervention.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 02/2008; 49(1):104-12.
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    ABSTRACT: Most psychosocial risk factors appear to have general rather than specific patterns of association with common childhood and adolescence disorders. However, previous research has typically failed to 1) control for comorbidity among disorders, 2) include a wide range of risk factors, and 3) examine sex by developmental stage effects on risk factor-disorder associations. This study tests the specificity of putative psychosocial risk factors while addressing these criticisms. Eight waves of data from the Great Smoky Mountains Study (N = 1,420) were used, covering children in the community age 9-16 years old. Youth and one parent were interviewed up to seven times using the Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Assessment, providing a total of 6,674 pairs of interviews. A wide range of putative neighborhood, school, peer, family, and child risk factors, and common and comorbid youth disorders were assessed. The majority of putative risk factors were specific to one disorder or one disorder domain. A unique or 'signature set' of putative risk factors was identified for each disorder. Several putative risk factors were associated with a disorder in preadolescent males, preadolescent females, adolescent males, or adolescent females only. Our findings support the need to define risk factors and disorders narrowly, to control comorbidity and other risk factors, and to consider developmental patterns of specificity by sex.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 02/2008; 49(1):34-42.
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    ABSTRACT: In the very first years of life, parenting is considered to be important for the regulation of the infant's emotional and physiological states. In the present study, three-month-old infants' cortisol responses (reactivity and recovery) to a mild everyday stressor, namely being taken out of the bath, were examined in relation to the quality of maternal behavior. It was hypothesized that a higher quality of maternal behavior towards the infant predicted lower cortisol reactivity as well as a better recovery from the reaction. The participants were 64 infants (34 boys and 30 girls) and their mothers. Maternal behavior (sensitivity and cooperation) towards the infant during the bathing routine was rated from videotapes. Salivary cortisol was obtained from the infants three times: before the bathing routine (T1), and 25 minutes (T2) and 40 minutes (T3) after the infants were taken out of the bath. The infants reacted with a significant increase in cortisol to the stressor (from 6.8 nmol/l to 9.9 nmol/l), and regression analysis showed that the higher the quality of maternal behavior the better the cortisol recovery from the stressor. Our findings indicate the potential importance of social processes for physiological recovery from everyday stressful situations in infants.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 02/2008; 49(1):97-103.
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    ABSTRACT: Spoken and gestural communication proficiency varies greatly among autistic individuals. Three studies examined the role of oral- and manual-motor skill in predicting autistic children's speech development. Study 1 investigated whether infant and toddler oral- and manual-motor skills predict middle childhood and teenage speech fluency; Study 2 verified those early infant and toddler predictions with historical home video; and Study 3 assessed the relation between autistic children's current-day oral-motor skill and their speech fluency. Infant and toddler oral-motor and manual-motor skills inter-correlated significantly, distinguished autistic children (N = 115) from typically developing children (N = 44), and distinguished autistic children whose current-day speech was minimally fluent (N = 33), moderately fluent (N = 39), and highly fluent (N = 39). These results were corroborated by analysis of historical home video (N = 32) and verified with current-day assessment (N = 40). The prominent associations among early oral- and manual-motor skills and later speech fluency bear implications for understanding communication in autism. For instance, these associations challenge the common assumption (made even in diagnostic criteria) that manual modes of communication are available to autistic individuals - if simply they choose to use them. These associations also highlight a potential confound from manual-motor skills when assessing autistic cognition, receptive language, and 'nonverbal' social communication.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 02/2008; 49(1):43-50.
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    ABSTRACT: Although juveniles within the justice system have high psychiatric morbidity, few comprehensive investigations have shown posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in female delinquents. Here, we aim to describe the nature and extent of PTSD and trauma exposure and to clarify the relationships among comorbidity and psychosocial factors in juvenile female offenders. Sixty-four girls were randomly interviewed using structured tools. Self-report measures were used to assess depression, eating behaviour, impulsivity and parental attitude. The PTSD prevalence was 33%, and 77% of the female juvenile offenders had been exposed to trauma. The offenders with PTSD showed a significantly high psychiatric comorbidity. Depression and adverse parenting were associated with PTSD development, and abnormal eating was also correlated with PTSD symptoms. Marked differences in the frequency and intensity of PTSD evaluation depending on the type of comorbidity and trauma were observed. Incarcerated young females in Japan have serious trauma-related problems, and the degree of depression is a strong predictor of PTSD development and symptoms. This study highlights the importance of adequate diagnosis and treatment of PTSD in delinquent female adolescents.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 02/2008; 49(1):79-87.
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    ABSTRACT: The goal of this study was to compare the predictive validity of the two main diagnostic schemata for childhood hyperactivity - attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD; Diagnostic and Statistical Manual- IV) and hyperkinetic disorder (HKD; International Classification of Diseases- 10th Edition). Diagnostic criteria for ADHD and HKD were used to classify 419 children ages 6 to 16 years referred to a clinic for behavioral problems into one of four groups: HKD, ADHD combined subtype (ADHD-C), ADHD hyperactive-impulsive subtype (ADHD-HI), ADHD inattentive subtype (ADHD-IA). These groups were compared on clinical characteristics including total symptom severity, overall impairment, exposure to psychosocial and neuro-developmental risks, family history of ADHD in first-degree family members, rate and type of comorbidity, intelligence, academic achievement, and on laboratory tests of motor response inhibition and working memory with each other and with normal controls (47). Of the 419 cases, there were 46 HKD (11.0%), 200 ADHD-C (47.7%), 60 ADHD-HI (14.3%) and 113 ADHD-IA (27.0%) cases. The HKD group had more symptoms and was more impaired on teachers' ratings than were the other groups. The ADHD-C and HKD groups had poorer inhibitory control than the ADHD-IA, ADHD-HI and control groups, and all four clinic groups showed inhibition deficit compared to controls. Groups did not differ in working memory. Compared to controls, the HKD, ADHD-C, ADHD-HI and ADHD-IA groups had higher familial risk of ADHD, greater psychosocial risk exposure, lower intellectual level and poorer academic attainment. However, we observed no differences among the clinic groups in these characteristics. Like earlier versions, ICD-10 and DSM-IV continue to delineate diagnostic entities with substantially different prevalence in clinic samples. However, HKD, ADHD-C, ADHD-IA and ADHD-HI groups overlap substantially in terms of important clinical characteristics, although HKD and ADHD-C may be somewhat more severe variants of the condition than ADHD-IA and ADHD-HI.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 02/2008; 49(1):70-8.
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    ABSTRACT: Results of several studies using the Vineland scale to explore links between social behavior and theory of mind (ToM) have produced mixed results, especially for children on the autism spectrum. The present pair of studies developed a psychometrically sound, age-referenced measure of social maturity to explore these issues further. In Study 1, 37 typically developing preschoolers took a battery of standard false belief tests of ToM and were rated by their teachers on a newly developed age-referenced social maturity scale with 7 items. In Study 2, a further group of 43 children aged 4 to 12 years (13 with autism, 14 with Asperger's disorder and 16 with typical development) took part in the same procedure. In Study 1, ToM was found to predict typical preschoolers' social maturity independently of age and verbal maturity. In Study 2, children with autism scored below age-matched and younger typical developers in both ToM and social maturity. Those with Asperger's disorder did well on ToM but poorly on social maturity. Study 2 replicated Study 1's finding (for typical children and for the full sample) that ToM was linked with social maturity independently of age and verbal ability, although the link was not independent of autism diagnosis. Teachers are capable of rating children's social behavior with peers as advanced, on-time or delayed for their age. Suggestive links between these ratings and ToM require further investigation, especially among children on the autism spectrum.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 01/2008; 48(12):1243-50.
  • Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 01/2008; 48(12):1157-9.
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    ABSTRACT: Little is known about mechanisms of genetic influence on panic, particularly in childhood. Cognitive theories of panic disorder highlight threatening interpretations of physical sensations, and increased awareness of such sensations. Specifically, anxiety sensitivity (AS) and heartbeat perception (HBP) have been associated with panic in adults and children. We examined genetic and environmental influences on childhood AS, HBP, panic/somatic ratings, and their associations. Self-ratings of AS and DSM-based anxiety (including panic/somatic items) were obtained from 300 eight-year-old twin pairs (600 individuals), selected for mother-rated child anxiety at age 7. HBP was also assessed. Panic/somatic ratings were significantly correlated with both AS (r = .55) and continuous HBP error scores (r = -.13). AS and HBP scores showed significantly greater correlations with panic/somatic ratings than with all other anxiety scales, except for HBP and school anxiety. Genetic influences on panic/somatic ratings were modest (15%), and moderate for both AS (37%), and HBP (30%). Non-shared environmental influences were substantial. The genetic correlations between panic/somatic ratings and both AS and HBP error scores were .98 (95% CI: .74-1.00) and -.46 (95% CI: -1.00-1.00) respectively. Self-ratings of panic and AS overlap genetically. Future research should consider whether AS mediates genetic risk for panic disorder.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 01/2008; 48(12):1184-91.
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    ABSTRACT: Previous research suggests a link between inter-parental conflict and children's psychological development. Most studies, however, have tended to focus on two broad indices of children's psychological adaptation (internalizing symptoms and externalizing problems) in considering the effects of inter-parental conflict on children's development. The present longitudinal study extends this body of research by considering the impact of inter-parental conflict on children's low academic attainment among a sample of 230 schoolchildren (age 11-13 years) living in the United Kingdom. Controlling for teacher reports of children's initial levels of aggression (Time 1), the proposed theoretical model linked parent and child reports of inter-parental conflict at Time 1 (1999) to children's perceptions of negative parent-child relations, appraisals of self-blame for marital conflict and teacher reports of children's aggressive behavior at Time 2 (2000), which in turn were linked to children's performance on standardized academic tests (English, Math, Science) at Time 3 (2001). Structural equation modeling was used to test all hypothesized relations in the proposed theoretical model. Support was found for the role of children's self-blaming attributions for parents' marital arguments, not negative parenting behavior, as a mechanism through which variation in their academic attainment is explained. Contrary to the focus emphasized in most current family and school-based intervention programs, findings suggest that the attributional processes engendered in children who live in households marked by high levels of inter-parental conflict and hostility have important implications for their long-term academic success.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 01/2008; 48(12):1223-32.

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