The development of children's understanding of common psychological problems

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
Development_CAMH 2009.pdf354.81 kBAdobe PDFDownload
Title: The development of children's understanding of common psychological problems
Authors: Hennessy, Eilis
Heary, Caroline
Permanent link:
Date: Feb-2009
Online since: 2010-11-15T16:32:13Z
Abstract: Background: The aim of the present study was to explore children’s beliefs about the causes of psychological problems and their beliefs about potential sources of help for peers experiencing these problems. Despite its importance this is an area that has received relatively little attention from researchers. Methods: One hundred and sixteen children were read short vignettes in focus groups or individual interviews. The vignettes described the behaviour of hypothetical children with ADHD, conduct disorder and depression. Following each vignette children were asked questions about the likely causes of the behaviour and possible sources of help. A cross sectional research design was used with equal numbers of boys and girls of three age groups, the average age of the children in each group was: 8.4 years; 11.5 years and 14.3 years respectively. Results: Children of all ages were able to offer a range of explanations for the behaviour of the children described in the vignettes and these explanations varied systematically with age and the nature of the behaviour described. The majority of children believed that behaviour could change and that help to support change could be provided by family and friends. Conclusions: Results confirm and extend the findings of earlier studies that there are developmental changes in children’s understanding of some common psychological problems.
Funding Details: Not applicable
Type of material: Journal Article
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
Journal: Child and Adolescent Mental Health
Volume: 14
Issue: 1
Start page: 42
End page: 47
Copyright (published version): 2008 Association for Child and Adolescent Mental Health
Keywords: Mental healthADHD/ADDConduct disorderDepressionChild developmentChildren’s perspectives
Subject LCSH: Children--Attitudes
Child mental health
Child development
DOI: 10.1111/j.1475-3588.2008.00494.x
Other versions:
Language: en
Status of Item: Peer reviewed
Appears in Collections:Psychology Research Collection

Show full item record

Citations 20

Last Week
Last month
checked on Feb 19, 2019

Google ScholarTM



This item is available under the Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Ireland. No item may be reproduced for commercial purposes. For other possible restrictions on use please refer to the publisher's URL where this is made available, or to notes contained in the item itself. Other terms may apply.