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Title: The relation between self-image and social adjustment in middle childhood
Author: Bekerman, Rivka
Awarding Body: University of London
Current Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Date of Award: 1973
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The present study is concerned with the relation between children's self-acceptance, and their acceptance by their peers, as well as the developmental processes involved in the establishment of the self-image during middle childhood. 144 children divided into four age groups (age 7.5, 8.5, 9.5 and 10.5) were included in the study. Children's self-image was investigated in terms of three variables: 1) self-acceptance 2) uncertainty or inconsistency of self-evaluation, and 3) a social versus personal orientation in evaluating both self and peers. Social adjustment was studied in terms of four variables: 1) sociometric status, 2) reciprocal choices, 3) insight into peers' choices, and 4) peer interactions during play situations. In the first part of the study, the equivalence of three measures of self acceptance: 1) self-esteem derived from an interview technique, 2) self-acceptance derived from a Q sort technique, and real self-ideal self congruency (derived from Kelly's repertory grid technique) was borne out. Self-acceptance and real self-ideal self congruency were found to be positively associated, though not entirely overlapping. The second part of the study was concerned with some developmental trends, which emerge during middle childhood in the self-image, as well as in peer-interaction. In this respect it was found that: 1) self-acceptance linearly decreases with age. 2) real self-ideal self congruency decreases with age, though a quadratic rather than linear age trend component was found. 3) Children's uncertainty with regard to self-evaluation linearly decreases with age. 4) The amount of peer interaction in play situations linearly increases with age. Social self-orientation (in terms of the ideal self) was found to increase with age. A parallel personal selforientation linearly decreased with age. A differentiation according to a social versus personal orientation in evaluating peers and self was investigated by principal component analysis. In the fourth part of the study a curvilinear relation between self-acceptance and acceptance by peers, tested separately in each of the eight subgroups (divided according to age and sex), was confirmed. Furthermore, the significance of this relation linearly increased with age.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Developmental Psychology