Jennifer E Lansford

Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, United States

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Publications (130)347.47 Total impact

  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The present study examined measurement invariance and convergent validity of a novel vignette-based measure of emotion-specific self-regulation that simultaneously assesses attributional bias, emotion-regulation, and self-efficacy beliefs about emotion regulation. Participants included 541 youth-mother dyads from three countries (Italy, the United States, and Colombia) and six ethnic/cultural groups. Participants were 12.62 years old (SD = 0.69). In response to vignettes involving ambiguous peer interactions, children reported their hostile/depressive attribution bias, self-efficacy beliefs about anger and sadness regulation, and anger/sadness regulation strategies (i.e., dysregulated expression and rumination). Across the six cultural groups, anger and sadness self-regulation subscales had full metric and partial scalar invariance for a one-factor model, with some exceptions. We found support for both a four- and three-factor oblique model (dysregulated expression and rumination loaded on a second-order factor) for both anger and sadness. Anger subscales were related to externalizing problems, while sadness subscales were related to internalizing symptoms.
    Assessment 11/2015; DOI:10.1177/1073191115615214 · 3.29 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This study advances understanding of predictors of child abuse and neglect at multiple levels of influence. Mothers, fathers, and children ( N = 1,418 families, M age of children = 8.29 years) were interviewed annually in three waves in 13 cultural groups in nine countries (China, Colombia, Italy, Jordan, Kenya, Philippines, Sweden, Thailand, and the United States). Multilevel models were estimated to examine predictors of (a) within-family differences across the three time points, (b) between-family within-culture differences, and (c) between-cultural group differences in mothers' and fathers' reports of corporal punishment and children's reports of their parents' neglect. These analyses addressed to what extent mothers' and fathers' use of corporal punishment and children's perceptions of their parents' neglect were predicted by parents' belief in the necessity of using corporal punishment, parents' perception of the normativeness of corporal punishment in their community, parents' progressive parenting attitudes, parents' endorsement of aggression, parents' education, children's externalizing problems, and children's internalizing problems at each of the three levels. Individual-level predictors (especially child externalizing behaviors) as well as cultural-level predictors (especially normativeness of corporal punishment in the community) predicted corporal punishment and neglect. Findings are framed in an international context that considers how abuse and neglect are defined by the global community and how countries have attempted to prevent abuse and neglect.
    Development and Psychopathology 11/2015; 27(4pt2):1417-1428. DOI:10.1017/S095457941500084X · 4.89 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Research supports the beneficial role of prosocial behaviors on children's adjustment and successful youth development. Empirical studies point to reciprocal relations between negative parenting and children's maladjustment, but reciprocal relations between positive parenting and children's prosocial behavior are understudied. In this study reciprocal relations between two different dimensions of positive parenting (quality of the mother-child relationship and the use of balanced positive discipline) and children's prosocial behavior were examined in Colombia, Italy, Jordan, Kenya, the Philippines, Sweden, Thailand, and the United States. Methods: Mother-child dyads (N = 1105) provided data over 2 years in two waves (Mage of child in wave 1 = 9.31 years, SD = 0.73; 50% female). Results: A model of reciprocal relations between parenting dimensions, but not among parenting and children's prosocial behavior, emerged. In particular, children with higher levels of prosocial behavior at age 9 elicited higher levels of mother-child relationship quality in the following year. Conclusions: Findings yielded similar relations across countries, evidencing that being prosocial in late childhood contributes to some degree to the enhancement of a nurturing and involved mother-child relationship in countries that vary widely on sociodemographic profiles and psychological characteristics. Policy and intervention implications of this study are discussed.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 10/2015; DOI:10.1111/jcpp.12477 · 6.46 Impact Factor
  • Sevtap Gurdal · Jennifer E. Lansford · Emma Sorbring ·

    Early Child Development and Care 09/2015; DOI:10.1080/03004430.2015.1083559
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    Isaac T Petersen · John E Bates · Kenneth A Dodge · Jennifer E Lansford · Gregory S Pettit ·
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    ABSTRACT: The present study applied item response theory to identify an efficient set of items of the Achenbach Externalizing scale from the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL; 33 items) and Teacher's Report Form (TRF; 35 items) that were sensitive to clinical-range scores. Mothers and teachers rated children's externalizing problems annually from ages 5 to 13 years in 2 independent samples (Ns = 585 and 1,199). Item properties for each rater across ages 5-8 and 9-13 were examined with item response theory. We identified 10 mother- and teacher-reported items from both samples based on the items' measurement precision for subclinical and clinical levels of externalizing problems: externalizing problems that involve meanness to others, destroying others' things, fighting, lying and cheating, attacking people, screaming, swearing/obscene language, temper tantrums, threatening people, and being loud. Scores on the scales using these items had strong reliability and psychometric properties, capturing nearly as much information as the full Externalizing scale for classifying clinical levels of externalizing problems. Scores on the scale with the 10 CBCL items had moderate accuracy, equivalent to the full Externalizing scale, in classifying diagnoses of conduct disorder based on a research diagnostic interview. Of course, comprehensive clinical assessment would consider additional items, dimensions of behavior, and sources of information, too, but it appears that the behaviors tapped by this select set of items may be core to externalizing psychopathology in children. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).
    Psychological Assessment 08/2015; DOI:10.1037/pas0000185 · 2.99 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Caregiving is requisite to wholesome child development from the beginning of life. A cross-sectional microgenetic analysis of six caregiving practices across the child's 1st year (0-12 months) in 42,539 families from nationally representative samples in 38 low- and middle-income countries is reported. Rates of caregiving varied tremendously within and across countries. However, caregiving practices followed one of two developmental trajectories: (a) greater proportions of caregivers read, told stories, and named, counted, and drew with each additional month of infant age, and (b) proportions of caregivers who played, sang songs, and took their infants outside increased each month from birth but reached an asymptote at 4-5 months. Rates and growth functions of caregiving have implications for infant care and development. Published 2015. This article has been contributed to by US Government employees and their work is in the public domain in the USA.
    Child Development 08/2015; 86(5). DOI:10.1111/cdev.12402 · 4.92 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We tested a model that children's tendency to attribute hostile intent to others in response to provocation is a key psychological process that statistically accounts for individual differences in reactive aggressive behavior and that this mechanism contributes to global group differences in children's chronic aggressive behavior problems. Participants were 1,299 children (mean age at year 1 = 8.3 y; 51% girls) from 12 diverse ecological-context groups in nine countries worldwide, followed across 4 y. In year 3, each child was presented with each of 10 hypothetical vignettes depicting an ambiguous provocation toward the child and was asked to attribute the likely intent of the provocateur (coded as benign or hostile) and to predict his or her own behavioral response (coded as nonaggression or reactive aggression). Mothers and children independently rated the child's chronic aggressive behavior problems in years 2, 3, and 4. In every ecological group, in those situations in which a child attributed hostile intent to a peer, that child was more likely to report that he or she would respond with reactive aggression than in situations when that same child attributed benign intent. Across children, hostile attributional bias scores predicted higher mother- and child-rated chronic aggressive behavior problems, even controlling for prior aggression. Ecological group differences in the tendency for children to attribute hostile intent statistically accounted for a significant portion of group differences in chronic aggressive behavior problems. The findings suggest a psychological mechanism for group differences in aggressive behavior and point to potential interventions to reduce aggressive behavior.
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 07/2015; 112(30). DOI:10.1073/pnas.1418572112 · 9.67 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: SYNOPSIS: Objective. The present study uses a mixed qualitative and quantitative method to examine three main research questions: What are the practices that mothers report they use when trying to correct their children’s misbehaviors? Are there common patterns of these practices? Are the patterns that emerge related to children’s well-being? Design. Italian mother–child dyads (N = 103) participated in the study (when children were 8 years of age). At Time 1, mothers answered open-ended questions about discipline; in addition, measures of maternal physical discipline and rejection and child aggression were assessed in mothers and children at Time 1, 1 year later (Time 2), and 2 years later (Time 3). Results. Mothers’ answers to open-ended questions about what they would do in three disciplinary situations were classified in six categories: physical or psychological punishment, control, mix of force and reasoning, reasoning, listening, and permissiveness. Cluster analysis yielded three clusters: Group 1, induction (predominant use of reasoning and listening; 74%); Group 2, punishment (punitive practices and no reasoning; 16%); Group 3, mixed practices (combination of reasoning and punishment, as well as high control and no listening; 10%). Multiple-group latent growth curves of maternal physical discipline, maternal rejection, and child aggression were implemented to evaluate possible differences in the developmental trends from Time 1 to Time 3, as a function of cluster. Conclusions. Qualitative data deepen understanding of parenting because they shed light on what parents think about themselves; their self-descriptions, in turn, help to identify ways of parenting that may have long-lasting consequences for children’s adjustment.
    Parenting 07/2015; 15(3):207-228. DOI:10.1080/15295192.2015.1053326 · 1.13 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Children's family obligations involve assistance and respect that children are expected to provide to immediate and extended family members and reflect beliefs related to family life that may differ across cultural groups. Mothers, fathers and children (N = 1432 families) in 13 cultural groups in 9 countries (China, Colombia, Italy, Jordan, Kenya, Philippines, Sweden, Thailand and United States) reported on their expectations regarding children's family obligations and parenting attitudes and behaviours. Within families, mothers and fathers had more concordant expectations regarding children's family obligations than did parents and children. Parenting behaviours that were warmer, less neglectful and more controlling as well as parenting attitudes that were more authoritarian were related to higher expectations regarding children's family obligations between families within cultures as well as between cultures. These international findings advance understanding of children's family obligations by contextualising them both within families and across a number of diverse cultural groups in 9 countries. © 2015 International Union of Psychological Science.
    International Journal of Psychology 06/2015; DOI:10.1002/ijop.12185 · 1.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We examine whether parental externalizing behavior has an indirect effect on adolescent externalizing behavior via elevations in life events, and whether this indirect effect is further qualified by an interaction between life events and adolescents' GABRA2 genotype (rs279871). We use data from 2 samples: the Child Development Project (CDP; n = 324) and FinnTwin12 (n = 802). In CDP, repeated measures of life events, mother-reported adolescent externalizing, and teacher-reported adolescent externalizing were used. In FinnTwin12, life events and externalizing were assessed at age 14. Parental externalizing was indexed by measures of antisocial behavior and alcohol problems or alcohol dependence symptoms in both samples. In CDP, parental externalizing was associated with more life events, and the association between life events and subsequent adolescent externalizing varied as a function of GABRA2 genotype (p ≤ .05). The association between life events and subsequent adolescent externalizing was stronger for adolescents with 0 copies of the G minor allele compared to those with 1 or 2 copies of the minor allele. Parallel moderation trends were observed in FinnTwin12 (p ≤ .11). The discussion focuses on how the strength of intergenerational pathways for externalizing psychopathology may differ as a function of adolescent-level individual differences. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).
    Journal of Abnormal Psychology 06/2015; 124(3). DOI:10.1037/abn0000066 · 4.86 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Caregiver education is known to relate to the growth of children, but possible mediation mechanisms of this association are poorly characterized and generally lack empirical support. We test whether instructional capital (caregiver education) leads to improved infant growth through availability of physical capital (household resources) across a wide swath of low- and middle-income countries (LMIC). Using the Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey, we explore relations among caregiver education, household resources, and infant (M age = 0.99 years) growth in 117,881 families living in 39 LMIC. Overall, household resources mediated 76% of the small association between caregiver education and infant growth. When disaggregated by countries characterized by low, medium, and high levels of human development (as indexed by average life expectancy, education, and gross domestic product), household resources mediated 48–78% of the association between caregiver education and infant growth. Caregiver education had effects on infant growth through household resources in countries characterized by low, medium, and high levels of human development; for girls and boys; and controlling for indexes of infant feeding and health.
    Infancy 05/2015; 20(4). DOI:10.1111/infa.12086 · 1.73 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We conducted a developmental analysis of genetic moderation of the effect of the Fast Track intervention on adult externalizing psychopathology. The Fast Track intervention enrolled 891 children at high risk to develop externalizing behavior problems when they were in kindergarten. Half of the enrolled children were randomly assigned to receive 10 years of treatment, with a range of services and resources provided to the children and their families, and the other half to usual care (controls). We previously showed that the effect of the Fast Track intervention on participants' risk of externalizing psychopathology at age 25 years was moderated by a variant in the glucocorticoid receptor gene. Children who carried copies of the A allele of the single nucleotide polymorphism rs10482672 had the highest risk of externalizing psychopathology if they were in the control arm of the trial and the lowest risk of externalizing psychopathology if they were in the treatment arm. In this study, we test a developmental hypothesis about the origins of this for better and for worse Gene × Intervention interaction (G × I): that the observed G × I effect on adult psychopathology is mediated by the proximal impact of intervention on childhood externalizing problems and adolescent substance use and delinquency. We analyzed longitudinal data tracking the 270 European American children in the Fast Track randomized control trial with available genetic information (129 intervention children, 141 control group peers, 69% male) from kindergarten through age 25 years. Results show that the same pattern of for better and for worse susceptibility to intervention observed at the age 25 follow-up was evident already during childhood. At the elementary school follow-ups and at the middle/high school follow-ups, rs10482672 predicted better adjustment among children receiving the Fast Track intervention and worse adjustment among children in the control condition. In turn, these proximal G × I effects early in development mediated the ultimate G × I effect on externalizing psychopathology at age 25 years. We discuss the contribution of these findings to the growing literature on genetic susceptibility to environmental intervention.
    Development and Psychopathology 02/2015; 27(1):81-95. DOI:10.1017/S095457941400131X · 4.89 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: It is generally believed that parental rejection of children leads to child maladaptation. However, the specific effects of perceived parental acceptance-rejection on diverse domains of child adjustment and development have been incompletely documented, and whether these effects hold across diverse populations and for mothers and fathers are still open questions. This study assessed children's perceptions of mother and father acceptance-rejection in 1,247 families from China, Colombia, Italy, Jordan, Kenya, the Philippines, Sweden, Thailand, and the United States as antecedent predictors of later internalizing and externalizing behavior problems, school performance, prosocial behavior, and social competence. Higher perceived parental rejection predicted increases in internalizing and externalizing behavior problems and decreases in school performance and prosocial behavior across 3 years controlling for within-wave relations, stability across waves, and parental age, education, and social desirability bias. Patterns of relations were similar across mothers and fathers and, with a few exceptions, all nine countries. Children's perceptions of maternal and paternal acceptance-rejection have small but nearly universal effects on multiple aspects of their adjustment and development regardless of the family's country of origin. © 2014 Association for Child and Adolescent Mental Health.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 12/2014; 56(8). DOI:10.1111/jcpp.12366 · 6.46 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Using data from two American and one Finnish long-term longitudinal studies, we examined continuity of general aggression from age 8 to physical aggression in early adulthood (age 21-30) and whether continuity of aggression differed by country, sex, and parent occupational status. In all samples, childhood aggression was assessed via peer nominations and early adulthood aggression via self-reports. Multi-group structural equation models revealed significant continuity in aggression in the American samples but not in the Finnish sample. These relations did not differ by sex but did differ by parent occupational status: whereas there was no significant continuity among American children from professional family-of-origin backgrounds, there was significant continuity among American children from non-professional backgrounds. Aggr. Behav. 9999:XX-XX, 2014. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    Aggressive Behavior 11/2014; 40(6). DOI:10.1002/ab.21546 · 2.28 Impact Factor
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    Isaac T Petersen · John E Bates · Kenneth A Dodge · Jennifer E Lansford · Gregory S Pettit ·
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    ABSTRACT: This longitudinal study considers externalizing behavior problems from ages 5 to 27 (N = 585). Externalizing problem ratings by mothers, fathers, teachers, peers, and self-report were modeled with growth curves. Risk and protective factors across many different domains and time frames were included as predictors of the trajectories. A major contribution of the study is in demonstrating how heterotypic continuity and changing measures can be handled in modeling changes in externalizing behavior over long developmental periods. On average, externalizing problems decreased from early childhood to preadolescence, increased during adolescence, and decreased from late adolescence to adulthood. There was strong nonlinear continuity in externalizing problems over time. Family process, peer process, stress, and individual characteristics predicted externalizing problems beyond the strong continuity of externalizing problems. The model accounted for 70% of the variability in the development of externalizing problems. The model's predicted values showed moderate sensitivity and specificity in prediction of arrests, illegal drug use, and drunk driving. Overall, the study showed that by using changing, developmentally relevant measures and simultaneously taking into account numerous characteristics of children and their living situations, research can model lengthy spans of development and improve predictions of the development of later, severe externalizing problems.
    Development and Psychopathology 08/2014; 27(3):1-28. DOI:10.1017/S0954579414000789 · 4.89 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Risky sexual behavior poses significant health risks by increasing sexually transmitted infections and unintended pregnancies. Previous research has documented many factors related to risky sexual behavior. This study adds to the literature by proposing a prospective, developmental model of peer factors related to risky sexual behavior. Developmental pathways to risky sexual behavior were examined in a sample of 517 individuals (51 % female; 82 % European American, 16 % African American, 2 % other) followed from age 5-27. Structural equation models examined direct and indirect effects of peer rejection (assessed via peer nominations at ages 5, 6, 7, and 8), affiliation with deviant peers (assessed via self-report at ages 11 and 12), and delinquency (assessed via maternal report at ages 10 and 16) on risky sexual behavior (assessed via self-report at age 27). More peer rejection during childhood, affiliation with deviant peers during pre- adolescence, and delinquency in childhood and adolescence predicted more risky sexual behavior through age 27, although delinquency at age 16 was the only risk factor that had a significant direct effect on risky sexual behavior through age 27 above and beyond the other risk factors. Peer rejection was related to subsequent risk factors for girls but not boys. Peer risk factors as early as age 5 shape developmental pathways through childhood and adolescence and have implications for risky sexual behavior into adulthood.
    Journal of Youth and Adolescence 08/2014; 43(10). DOI:10.1007/s10964-014-0175-y · 2.72 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We assessed 2 forms of agreement between mothers' and fathers' socially desirable responding in China, Colombia, Italy, Jordan, Kenya, the Philippines, Sweden, Thailand and the United States (N = 1110 families). Mothers and fathers in all 9 countries reported socially desirable responding in the upper half of the distribution, and countries varied minimally (but China was higher than the cross-country grand mean and Sweden lower). Mothers and fathers did not differ in reported levels of socially desirable responding, and mothers' and fathers' socially desirable responding were largely uncorrelated. With one exception, mothers' and fathers' socially desirable responding were similarly correlated with self-perceptions of parenting, and correlations varied somewhat across countries. These findings are set in a discussion of socially desirable responding, cultural psychology and family systems.
    International Journal of Psychology 07/2014; 50(3). DOI:10.1002/ijop.12084 · 1.23 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Two key tasks facing parents across cultures are managing children's behaviors (and misbehaviors) and conveying love and affection. Previous research has found that corporal punishment generally is related to worse child adjustment, whereas parental warmth is related to better child adjustment. This study examined whether the association between corporal punishment and child adjustment problems (anxiety and aggression) is moderated by maternal warmth in a diverse set of countries that vary in a number of sociodemographic and psychological ways. Interviews were conducted with 7- to 10-year-old children (N = 1,196; 51% girls) and their mothers in 8 countries: China, Colombia, Italy, Jordan, Kenya, the Philippines, Thailand, and the United States. Follow-up interviews were conducted 1 and 2 years later. Corporal punishment was related to increases, and maternal warmth was related to decreases, in children's anxiety and aggression over time; however, these associations varied somewhat across groups. Maternal warmth moderated the effect of corporal punishment in some countries, with increases in anxiety over time for children whose mothers were high in both warmth and corporal punishment. The findings illustrate the overall association between corporal punishment and child anxiety and aggression as well as patterns specific to particular countries. Results suggest that clinicians across countries should advise parents against using corporal punishment, even in the context of parent-child relationships that are otherwise warm, and should assist parents in finding other ways to manage children's behaviors.
    Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology 06/2014; 43(4):1-16. DOI:10.1080/15374416.2014.893518 · 1.92 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This study examined whether parents' social information processing was related to their subsequent reports of their harsh discipline. Interviews were conducted with mothers (n = 1,277) and fathers (n = 1,030) of children in 1,297 families in nine countries (China, Colombia, Italy, Jordan, Kenya, the Philippines, Sweden, Thailand, and the United States), initially when children were 7 to 9 years old and again 1 year later. Structural equation models showed that parents' positive evaluations of aggressive responses to hypothetical childrearing vignettes at Time 1 predicted parents' self-reported harsh physical and nonphysical discipline at Time 2. This link was consistent across mothers and fathers, and across the nine countries, providing support for the universality of the link between positive evaluations of harsh discipline and parents' aggressive behavior toward children. The results suggest that international efforts to eliminate violence toward children could target parents' beliefs about the acceptability and advisability of using harsh physical and nonphysical forms of discipline.
    Development and Psychopathology 04/2014; 26(3):1-13. DOI:10.1017/S0954579414000236 · 4.89 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Using a culturally informed risk-protective framework, the purpose of this study was to examine spiritual well-being (existential, religious) as a moderator (protective factor) in the relation between neighborhood disorder (risk factor) and parenting stress in a high-risk sample of low-socioeconomic status (SES) African American women (N = 144). These women, who were primary caregivers of children between 8 and 12 years old, reported on disorder in their existential and religious well-being, neighborhoods, and 3 types of parenting stress. Women who perceived more disorder in their neighborhood had more parenting stress, and women who reported more existential and religious well-being had less parenting stress. Existential (characterized by a sense of purpose in life), but not religious (characterized by a sense of life in relation with God) well-being moderated the relation between neighborhood disorder and all types of parenting stress, such that women with medium or high levels of existential well-being had low levels of parenting stress at low levels of neighborhood disorder, but higher levels of parenting stress at higher levels of neighborhood disorder. No moderation effects were found at low levels of existential well-being. Results are framed in a context that emphasizes their relevance to incorporating family interventions that bolster culturally relevant resilience factors, such as spirituality, pertinent to low-SES African American families. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved).
    Journal of Family Psychology 04/2014; 28(6). DOI:10.1037/a0036373 · 1.89 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

4k Citations
347.47 Total Impact Points


  • 2001-2015
    • Duke University
      • Center for Child and Family Policy
      Durham, North Carolina, United States
  • 2012
    • Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development
      Maryland, United States
  • 2006
    • Brandeis University
      Волтам, Massachusetts, United States
    • New York State
      New York City, New York, United States
  • 2002
    • Indiana University Bloomington
      • Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences
      Bloomington, Indiana, United States
  • 1999-2001
    • University of Michigan
      • Department of Psychology
      Ann Arbor, Michigan, United States
  • 1998
    • University of Texas at Austin
      • School of Human Ecology
      Austin, Texas, United States

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