Sequential Analysis of Mastery Behavior in 6- and 12-Month-Old Infants

Robert H. MacTurk, Mary E. McCarthy, Peter M. Vietze, Leon J. Yarrow

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Scopus citations

Abstract

We examined the pattern and direction of behaviors that reflect infants' underlying mastery motivation. The sequences of mastery behavior were analyzed in a sample of 67 infants when they were 6 and 12 months old. We computed (a) the frequencies of each of six categories of mastery behavior, transitional probabilities, and z scores for each possible behavior change between the categories and (b) the transitions from a mastery behavior to an instance of positive affect. The analyses revealed significant age changes in the frequency of each category; however, the significant transitional probabilities among the six categories displayed a similar organization at both ages. The transitions from a mastery behavior to an instance of positive affect suggest that it is persistent, goal-directed behaviors that contribute to an infant's feeling of efficacy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)199-203
Number of pages5
JournalDevelopmental Psychology
Volume23
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1987

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