Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology

, Volume 42, Issue 5, pp 731–742 | Cite as

Latent Profile Analysis of Observed Parenting Behaviors in a Clinic Sample

  • Lindsay A. Borden
  • Keith C. Herman
  • Melissa Stormont
  • Nidhi Goel
  • Dana Darney
  • Wendy M. Reinke
  • Carolyn Webster-Stratton


We examined typologies of parenting practices using latent profile analysis (LPA) in a sample of families with young children who had externalizing behavior disorders. We also examined mother and child characteristics associated with class membership using ratings from multiple informants. The sample included pooled data from five parenting treatment outcome research studies on oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) and/or conduct disorder (CD) conducted throughout the past 20 years. These studies included 21 separate cohorts of children resulting in a total of 514 families. All children met diagnostic criteria for ODD or CD and 78 % were male. Parenting practices were observed by independent raters using the Dyadic Parent–child Interactive Coding System-Revised (DPICS-R). Four summary scores (i.e., total critical statements, total commands, total positive, total supportive) from the DPICS-R were used as class indictors in the LPA. Four classes best characterized the parenting practices of this clinic sample, roughly comprising a quarter of the sample each: Positive Only, Negative Only, Positive/Negative, and Neither Positive/Negative. High observed child negative behaviors, low observed child warmth, high socioeconomic status, and low academic performance distinguished the two classes with high negative behaviors (Negative Only, Positive/Negative) from the other classes. These results provide markers of the most common parenting profiles at entry into treatment programs for behavior disorders in young children. Findings have significant implications for the tailoring parenting interventions and supports to specific family needs.


Externalizing problems Parenting practices Clinic sample Young children Latent profile analysis 



The study was supported in part by a National Institutes of Health National Center for Nursing Research Grant 5 R01NR01075-11 and a National Institute of Mental Health Research Scientist Development Award MH00988-09 awarded to Carolyn Webster-Stratton.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lindsay A. Borden
    • 1
  • Keith C. Herman
    • 2
  • Melissa Stormont
    • 2
  • Nidhi Goel
    • 3
  • Dana Darney
    • 4
  • Wendy M. Reinke
    • 2
  • Carolyn Webster-Stratton
    • 5
  1. 1.Division of Child & Adolescent PsychiatryJohns Hopkins University School of MedicineBaltimoreUSA
  2. 2.University of MissouriColumbiaUSA
  3. 3.Texas Child Study Center/Dell Children’s Medical CenterAustinUSA
  4. 4.Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public HealthBaltimoreUSA
  5. 5.University of WashingtonSeattleUSA

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