Integrating Biological, Behavioral, and Social Levels of Analysis in Early Child Development: Progress, Problems, and Prospects

Douglas A. Granger, Katie T. Kivlighan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

60 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Integration of noninvasive, biological measures into behavioral research has increased, but the interpretation of biobehavioral findings in relation to developmental outcomes is rarely straightforward. This commentary highlights the need for specific, theoretically derived hypotheses, multiple measures of behavioral and biological processes, and analytical strategies aimed at explaining interindividual differences in intraindividual change. It is suggested here that the next phase of biosocial research needs to move beyond description and toward development of mid-level theories that will enable researchers to specify, test, and refine hypotheses of how biobehavioral processes interact with social-contextual factors to influence development. These mid-level biosocial models will be necessary to determine whether individual differences in children's adrenocortical activity confer risk or resilience because of early or cumulative exposure to nonparental care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1058-1063
Number of pages6
JournalChild Development
Volume74
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2003
Externally publishedYes

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Behavioral Research
Biological Phenomena
Child Development
Individuality
Research Personnel
behavioral research
Research
resilience
social factors
interpretation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

Cite this

Integrating Biological, Behavioral, and Social Levels of Analysis in Early Child Development : Progress, Problems, and Prospects. / Granger, Douglas A.; Kivlighan, Katie T.

In: Child Development, Vol. 74, No. 4, 07.2003, p. 1058-1063.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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