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Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
Expressed Emotion in Homeless Families: A Methodological Study of the Five-Minute Speech Sample
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Conducted in an emergency homeless shelter, this study aimed to validate parents' expressed emotion (EE) from the Five-Minute Speech Sample (FMSS) with observed parenting practices in a very high-risk population and examine how different aspects of parents' EE, including positive emotional expressions, related to observed parenting and children's school adjustment. (Authors)
Conducted in an emergency homeless shelter, this study aimed to validateparents' expressed emotion (EE) from the Five-Minute Speech Sample(FMSS) with observed parenting practices in a very high-risk populationand examine how different aspects of parents' EE, including positiveemotional expressions, related to observed parenting and children'sschool adjustment. Using 3 different coding approaches, we assessed thereliability and validity of 4 aspects of the FMSS-critical statements,positive statements, negative affect, and warmth-in relation to negativeand positive parenting behaviors and children's behavioral andrelational adjustment in school. The FMSS was administered to 39 parentsabout their 4- to 7-year-old children. Parent-child dyads participatedin a 45-min videotaped sequence of games and tasks later coded forparenting behavior. Results indicated that parents' warmth during theFMSS was related to more positive and effective observed parentingbehaviors. Critical statements and negative affect during the FMSS wererelated to more coercive parenting behaviors. Negative affect also wasrelated to teachers' reports of children's increased externalizingbehavior, less prosocial behavior with peers, and more conflict withteachers. Criticism maintained associations with observed parenting,even for parents who provided less than 5 min of speech. This studyprovides preliminary but promising evidence for the validity of FMSSscores in a high-risk sample of families and, specifically, for aspectsof the FMSS to be efficient correlates of parenting behavior and aspectsof children's school adjustment. Challenges, limitations, and promisingfeatures of the FMSS for use with highly disadvantaged parents arediscussed. (Authors)
Journal
2012
26
8
648-653
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