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Jacobs Center for Productive Youth Development

Talk by Dr. rer. nat. Tilman Reinelt

Self-regulation in early childhood

April 28, 2023, 10:15 h
Andreasstrasse 15, 8050 Zurich, AND 4.06 (4th floor)

Vorschaubild Tilman Reinelt

The concept of self-regulation has been investigated by different disciplines within psychology including motivational psychology, health psychology, clinical psychology, cognitive psychology, educational psychology, and developmental psychology. However, despite similar definitions of self-regulation, these disciplines differ in their understanding of the concept with regard to (a) the term “self”, (b) state and trait aspects of self-regulation, (c) the duration of underlying processes, and (d) possible intervention targets.
As the development of self-regulation starts during infancy, when infants adjust themselves to the new environment, I will highlight specific aspects of self-regulation from a developmental psychology perspective. In particular, I will focus on the role of parents in developing self-regulation. Relying on maternal reports in a 10-day diary study, I will then demonstrate how infant trait self-regulation relates to infant state self-regulation.
I will conclude by presenting opportunities to investigate the development of self-regulation in the Zurich birth cohort study LEARN (Long-term effects of early nutrition on child development). The LEARN study combines a classical panel study with a measurement burst design and continuous measures of child development. It assesses various biomarkers and includes reports from both mothers and fathers. Currently being planned to assess child development during the first two years of life, the LEARN data set will offer several possibilities for collaboration.

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