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The Effects of Mothers' Cultural Values and Parenting Practices on Children's Prosocial Behaviors

Rachel C Hayes, University of Nebraska - Lincoln


The primary purpose of the current study was to better understand how cultural values may shape Mexican American children’s prosocial development. A focus on this population was important as socialization research concerning positive developmental outcomes in Latino families is understudied. Two hundred and three Mexican American children (104 girls; mean age = 10.91 years) and their mothers completed measures of mothers’ cultural values and parenting practices, and of children’s prosocial behaviors. Mothers’ values were positively associated with their parenting practices but not associated to children’s prosocial behaviors. Mothers’ practices were also largely unassociated to children’s prosocial behaviors. However, structural equation modeling analyses indicated general support for the indirect effect of mothers’ cultural values on children’s prosocial behaviors through parenting practices. Developmental niche (Super & Harkness, 1986) and internalization (Grusec & Goodnow, 1994) theories provide a framework for examining how mothers’ values may influence children’s prosocial behaviors through mothers’ parenting practices.

Subject Area

Developmental psychology

Recommended Citation

Hayes, Rachel C, "The Effects of Mothers' Cultural Values and Parenting Practices on Children's Prosocial Behaviors" (2017). ETD collection for University of Nebraska-Lincoln. AAI10683333.