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Temperamental Influences on Risk-taking during Middle Childhood

Nyström, Beatrice LU (2016)
Abstract (Swedish)
Min avhandling handlar om hur barns medfödda temperamentsegenskaper påverkar deras risktagande. Temperamentsegenskaper antas avspegla aktiviteten i biologiskt nedärvda motivationssystem. Aktiviteten i dessa avgör hur snabbt, hur starkt och hur länge vi kommer att reagera i olika situationer. I vår första studie ville vi studera psykometriska egenskaper hos det frågeformulär vi avsåg att använda i studie 2 och 3; the Temperament in Middle Childhood Questionnaire (TMCQ; Simonds & Rothbart, 2004), från Rothbart’s temperamentsteori. Inför studie 2 var vår huvudhypotes att barns temperamentsegenskaper påverkar deras risktagandetendenser, och att det framförallt är kombinationen av de olika egenskaperna som är avgörande. Inför studie 3 antog... (More)
Min avhandling handlar om hur barns medfödda temperamentsegenskaper påverkar deras risktagande. Temperamentsegenskaper antas avspegla aktiviteten i biologiskt nedärvda motivationssystem. Aktiviteten i dessa avgör hur snabbt, hur starkt och hur länge vi kommer att reagera i olika situationer. I vår första studie ville vi studera psykometriska egenskaper hos det frågeformulär vi avsåg att använda i studie 2 och 3; the Temperament in Middle Childhood Questionnaire (TMCQ; Simonds & Rothbart, 2004), från Rothbart’s temperamentsteori. Inför studie 2 var vår huvudhypotes att barns temperamentsegenskaper påverkar deras risktagandetendenser, och att det framförallt är kombinationen av de olika egenskaperna som är avgörande. Inför studie 3 antog vi att barnens vilja att ta risker, och deras svarshastighet vid beslutsfattandet, skulle påverkas av möjliga vinster och förluster. Vi antog att sambandet skulle påverkas av storleken på vinsten och förlusten samt att sambandet skulle modereras av deras temperamentsegenskaper. Våra resultat visar att en kombinerad aktivitet av de olika motivationssystemen är avgörande för risk-tagande hos barn, samt att förmågan att reglera denna aktivitet är viktig för att kunna hämma risk-tagandeimpulser. Vidare visar våra resultat att kontextuella faktorer i hög grad inverkar på barns beslutsfattande i situationer av risk, och att temperaments egenskaper inverkar i stor utsträckning på denna process. (Less)
Abstract
This thesis concerns temperamental qualities and their influence on risk-taking behavior during middle childhood (7–11 years of age). Contemporary research generally agrees upon the notion that temperament constitutes two motivational systems, sensitive to punishment and reward respectively, together with a third system that is responsible for regulating the motivational systems. Risk-taking is generally regarded as the tendency to engage in potentially harmful or dangerous behaviors that at the same time provide opportunities for positive outcomes (Leigh, 1999). Study 1 of this thesis provides a psychometric evaluation of the Temperament in Middle Childhood Questionnaire (TMCQ; Simonds & Rothbart, 2004), one of the temperament... (More)
This thesis concerns temperamental qualities and their influence on risk-taking behavior during middle childhood (7–11 years of age). Contemporary research generally agrees upon the notion that temperament constitutes two motivational systems, sensitive to punishment and reward respectively, together with a third system that is responsible for regulating the motivational systems. Risk-taking is generally regarded as the tendency to engage in potentially harmful or dangerous behaviors that at the same time provide opportunities for positive outcomes (Leigh, 1999). Study 1 of this thesis provides a psychometric evaluation of the Temperament in Middle Childhood Questionnaire (TMCQ; Simonds & Rothbart, 2004), one of the temperament questionnaires used in the other two studies. We also tested the ability of the punishment and reward sensitivity factors from the r-RST, as measured by the Sensitivity to Punishment, Sensitivity to Reward Questionnaire for Children (SPSRQ-C; Colder et al., 2011), to validate the corresponding factors from the TMCQ. Our second study examines the interaction effects between temperamental traits fear, drive, and activation control on risk-taking. Fear and drive represent the punishment sensitivity system and the reward system respectively, and activation control is the ability to control the reactions in these two systems. Results from this study suggest that the joint influence of the temperamental systems is of great importance in risk-taking, and also that activation control abilities provide a good protection for children prone to risk-taking behavior. Lastly, our third study examines how children’s temperamental qualities interact with incentive contexts in risky decision-making. Results suggest that incentive-related contextual factors have a strong influence on risky decision-making and that temperament modifies this influence, thereby reducing or increasing children’s proneness to take risks. The findings supported predictions based on the revised Reinforcement Sensitivity Theory (r-RST; Gray & McNaughton, 2000), regarding how temperament and incentive context jointly determine behavior in risk-taking situations. The results from our studies provide a better understanding of how temperamental qualities interact in children’s risk-taking, and of how the effects of temperament on risky decision-making can be moderated. This is highly relevant information, since research suggests that effortful control abilities are possible to improve through training. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
supervisor
opponent
  • Associate professor Brocki, Karin, Uppsala university
organization
alternative title
Temperamentets inverkan på risktagande under barndomen.
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Temperament, Risk-taking, Decision-making, Middle childhood, Temperament, Risktagande, Beslutsfattande, Barndomen
edition
1
pages
103 pages
defense location
Auditorium, Stora Algatan 4, Lund
defense date
2017-02-16 13:00
ISBN
978-91-7753-094-7
978-91-7753-095-4
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
b0f711f2-47cd-4bed-a6b7-ac3ba1e26fa4
date added to LUP
2016-12-09 11:33:15
date last changed
2017-03-01 17:37:02
@phdthesis{b0f711f2-47cd-4bed-a6b7-ac3ba1e26fa4,
  abstract     = {This thesis concerns temperamental qualities and their influence on risk-taking behavior during middle childhood (7–11 years of age). Contemporary research generally agrees upon the notion that temperament constitutes two motivational systems, sensitive to punishment and reward respectively, together with a third system that is responsible for regulating the motivational systems. Risk-taking is generally regarded as the tendency to engage in potentially harmful or dangerous behaviors that at the same time provide opportunities for positive outcomes (Leigh, 1999). Study 1 of this thesis provides a psychometric evaluation of the Temperament in Middle Childhood Questionnaire (TMCQ; Simonds & Rothbart, 2004), one of the temperament questionnaires used in the other two studies. We also tested the ability of the punishment and reward sensitivity factors from the r-RST, as measured by the Sensitivity to Punishment, Sensitivity to Reward Questionnaire for Children (SPSRQ-C; Colder et al., 2011), to validate the corresponding factors from the TMCQ. Our second study examines the interaction effects between temperamental traits fear, drive, and activation control on risk-taking. Fear and drive represent the punishment sensitivity system and the reward system respectively, and activation control is the ability to control the reactions in these two systems. Results from this study suggest that the joint influence of the temperamental systems is of great importance in risk-taking, and also that activation control abilities provide a good protection for children prone to risk-taking behavior. Lastly, our third study examines how children’s temperamental qualities interact with incentive contexts in risky decision-making. Results suggest that incentive-related contextual factors have a strong influence on risky decision-making and that temperament modifies this influence, thereby reducing or increasing children’s proneness to take risks. The findings supported predictions based on the revised Reinforcement Sensitivity Theory (r-RST; Gray & McNaughton, 2000), regarding how temperament and incentive context jointly determine behavior in risk-taking situations. The results from our studies provide a better understanding of how temperamental qualities interact in children’s risk-taking, and of how the effects of temperament on risky decision-making can be moderated. This is highly relevant information, since research suggests that effortful control abilities are possible to improve through training. },
  author       = {Nyström, Beatrice},
  isbn         = {978-91-7753-094-7},
  keyword      = {Temperament,Risk-taking,Decision-making,Middle childhood,Temperament,Risktagande,Beslutsfattande,Barndomen},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {103},
  school       = {Lund University},
  title        = {Temperamental Influences on Risk-taking during Middle Childhood},
  year         = {2016},
}