Master of Science (MS)
First Committee Member
Christopher A. Kearney
Second Committee Member
Third Committee Member
Fourth Committee Member
Number of Pages
Children with selective mutism often present as a very heterogeneous population, with both anxious (APA, 2000; 2013; Kristensen 2000; Manassis et al., 2007; Steinhausen & Juzi, 1996; Yeganeh et al., 2003) and oppositional symptoms (APA, 2013; Andersson & Thomsen, 1998; Kolvin & Fundudis, 1981; Krohn, Weckstein, & Wright, 1992). This study sought to identify anxiety and oppositional behavior profiles in a clinical sample of children with selective mutism. Also, this study sought to determine both discriminant and concurrent validity for these profiles and examine their association with family expressiveness, conflict and control. Participants (n=57) included youth receiving treatment at the UNLV Child School Refusal and Anxiety Disorders Clinic for selective mutism. Hypothesis 1 was that anxious and oppositional behavior profiles would be identified in a clinical sample of children with selective mutism. Results from Hypothesis 1 served as the basis for the remaining hypotheses. Hypothesis 1 was supported. Hypothesis 2 was that children with selective mutism with an anxious profile would display social problems and symptoms of social anxiety disorder. In addition, these children were expected to show little connection to aggressive behaviors and symptoms of oppositional defiant disorder. Concurrent validity for Factor 1 was supported. However, discriminant validity was only partially supported. Hypothesis 3 was that children with selective mutism with an oppositional profile would display aggressive behavior and symptoms of oppositional defiant disorder. In addition, these children were expected to show little connection to social problems and symptoms of social anxiety disorder. Hypothesis 3 was only partially supported, demonstrating concurrent but not discriminant validity. Hypothesis 4 examined the association between anxious and oppositional profiles and conflict, expressiveness and control subscales on the Family Environment Scale. Hypothesis 4 was only partially supported, with an association between an oppositional profile and conflict. Clinical implications, future directions and limitations were discussed.
Anxiety; Anxiety in children; Behavior disorders in children; Behavior profile; Opposition; Oppositional defiant disorder in children; Selective mutism
Child Psychology | Clinical Psychology | Psychology
University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Diliberto, Rachele, "Oppositional and Anxiety Behavior Profiles in a Clinical Sample of Youth with Selective Mutism" (2014). UNLV Theses, Dissertations, Professional Papers, and Capstones. 2255.
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