Researching Temperament

  • ● Research in Temperament
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    Research in temperament has blossomed in the last 15 years through the efforts of literally hundreds of scientists in many disciplines.

    There are both basic and applied research programs at many of the leading universities in the US and other countries around the world. It would be impossible to name every contributor to the literature. However, there are a number of research programs that have been particularly influential in shaping our knowledge about temperament.

  • ● The following list indicates some major contributors:
    • Mary Rothbart and colleagues at the University of Oregon, who have been investigating basic processes of self-regulation and effortful control in infants and young children

    • Jack Bates and colleagues at Indiana University, who have done work on difficult infant temperament and its relationship to aversive control techniques in early childhood.

    • Ted Wachs at Purdue University has made contributions to the study of interaction between biology and environment.

    • Adam Matheny and colleagues at University of Louisville School of Medicine have done numerous investigations of infant and early childhood temperament, its structure and the relationship between temperament and clinical phenomena such as accidental injury.

    • Jerome Kagan and colleagues at Harvard have conducted numerous studies on inhibition and its physiological correlates in infancy and toddlerhood.

    • Hill Goldsmith and colleagues at the University of Wisconsin have made major contributions in the areas of twin studies and the theoretical structure of temperament including its relationship to attachment and other affective variables.

    • Barbara Keogh and colleagues at the University of California at Los Angeles have conducted numerous studies of the role of temperament in affecting school learning and particularly the role of teachability in doing so.

    • Robert Plomin (now in London) and colleagues at the Institute of Behavioral Genetics in Boulder, CO have estimated heritability and studied other behavioral/genetic elements of temperament.

    • Diana Guerin, Allen Gottfried, and colleagues at California State-Fullerton have conducted a 10 year longitudinal study of temperament and its developmental and behavioral significance.

    • Gedolph Kohnstamm, at the University of Leiden in the Netherlands, and Charles Halverson at the University of Georgia, and their colleagues, have done work on the factorial structure of temperament and its relationship to later personality that has been in progress for many years.