Publication details

Socioeconomic characteristics, family structure and trajectories of children's psychosocial problems in a period of social transition

Authors

KURUCZOVÁ Daniela KLÁNOVÁ Jana JARKOVSKÝ Jiří PIKHART Hynek DOBROVOLNÁ Julie

Year of publication 2020
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Plos one
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Science

Citation
Web https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0234074
Doi http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0234074
Keywords BEHAVIOR PROBLEMS; ASSOCIATIONS; ADJUSTMENT; STRENGTHS; HEALTH
Description Data from the Czech part of the European Longitudinal Study of Pregnancy and Childhood offer a unique opportunity to examine a period of changing socioeconomic structure of the country. Our aim was to analyse the association between socioeconomic status, family structure and children's psychosocial problems at the age of 7, 11, 15 and 18 years in 3,261 subjects and compare our results with findings from western settings. The Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) and its five subscales were used to assess individual problem areas (emotional symptoms, peer problems, hyperactivity, conduct problems) and prosocial behaviour. Socioeconomic status was represented by maternal education and three forms of family structure were identified: nuclear family, new partner family and single parent family. The SDQ subscale score over time was modelled as a quadratic growth curve using a linear mixed-effects model. Maternal university education was associated with a faster decline in problems over time for all five SDQ subscales. Problems in children from nuclear families were found to be significantly lower than in children from single parent families for all SDQ subscales with the exception of peer problems. Compared to nuclear families, children from new partner families scored significantly higher in hyperactivity and conduct problems subscales. The nuclear family structure and higher maternal education have been identified as protective factors for children's psychosocial problems, in agreement with findings from western settings. Adopting a longitudinal perspective was shown as essential for providing a more complex view of children's psychosocial problems over time.
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