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Title:Translating social motivation into action: The contributions of need for approval to social outcomes in elementary school
Author(s):Bohn, Lauren E.
Advisor(s):Rudolph, Karen D.
Department / Program:Psychology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):peer relations
social behavior
social motivation
Abstract:This research examined how 2nd grade children’s need for approval from peers influenced their social behavior (prosocial behavior, overt and relational aggression, and avoidant behavior) as well as how peers respond to them (popularity, victimization, and exclusion) across a one year span. Need for approval was conceptualized as either the motivation to gain approval or avoid disapproval from peers. Children (N = 526, M age = 7.95, SD = .33) reported on their need for approval and their teachers reported on children’s social outcomes. As anticipated, having an approach orientation, as reflected in positive need for approval, is adaptive by promoting positive outcomes (i.e., popularity) and protecting against negative outcomes (i.e., aggression, victimization, and exclusion). Conversely, an avoidance orientation is more disadvantageous because it places children at risk for negative outcomes (i.e. diminished popularity and heightened aggression, victimization, and exclusion). The current study shows that children’s approach-avoidance orientation contributes to their peer relationships over time, providing specific targets for interventions that optimize children’s peer relationships.
Issue Date:2011-05-25
Rights Information:
Copyright 2011 Lauren E. Bohn
Date Available in IDEALS:2011-05-25
Date Deposited:2011-05

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