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Title: Motor difficulties and psychosocial functioning in children who are excluded from school and young people who offend
Author: Taylor, Bronagh
Awarding Body: Queen's University Belfast
Current Institution: Queen's University Belfast
Date of Award: 2017
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Chapter 1 introduces the bioecological model of Urie Bronfenbrenner to explore the risk factors that may negatively impact on early development, with possible psychosocial ramifications, while chapter 2 addresses research on the potential effects of motor difficulties on psychosocial functioning, with reference to the environmental stress hypothesis. This research suggests that there is a bi-directional relationship between motor function and socio-emotional development. In Chapter 3, the motor abilities of children who were excluded from mainstream education were assessed. It was found that 50% of the children displayed clinically significant levels of motor difficulties that required intervention as well as high levels of persistence of the asymmetrical tonic neck reflex (ATNR). Regression analyses revealed that measures of hyperactivity, childhood adversity, ATNR persistence and gender were significant predictors of psychosocial functioning. It was concluded that motor difficulties and reflex persistence should be considered within a broader bioecological framework that acknowledges the powerful impact of childhood adversity on underlying neurological processes. Chapter 4 discusses research on the developmental pathways of oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) and conduct problems (CD) in children and young people, while chapter 5 describes a study of motor function in a sample of young people in the Juvenile Justice System. This sample showed a greater level of motor difficulty in comparison to young people in mainstream education, with 34% performing at a clinically significant level of motor impairment. Furthermore, they showed a greater level of ATNR persistence and had a lower overall level of literacy. Regression analyses revealed that motor skills, childhood adversity and literacy were significant predictors of conduct disorder in this sample. It was concluded that motor and literacy skills were impaired in the sample of young people who offend, but that these difficulties, as in Chapter 3, should be viewed within the wider context of childhood adversity.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available