Social Competence in Preschool Children: Replication of Results and Clarification of a Hierarchical Measurement Model

António J. Santos, Inês Peceguina, João R. Daniel, Nana Shin, Brian E. Vaughn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study tested assumptions and conclusions reached in an earlier confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) study of the social competence (SC) construct for preschool children. Two samples (total N = 408; a new Portuguese sample and one from US samples that had participated in the original study) contributed data. Seven SC indicators were tested for mean differences across age, sex, and sample. Significant sex differences were found for peer acceptance (favoring girls) and for initiating affectively neutral interactions (boys had higher rates), and the sex by sample interaction also was significant for initiating interactions (i.e., effect significant only in the Portuguese sample). In CFAs, the hypothesized structure of SC fits the data and was invariant across sample and age within sample in both measurement and structural tests. The model was invariant at the measurement level for sex within sample tests, but not at the structural level. The results replicate and extend understandings of SC reported in the original study.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)163-179
Number of pages17
JournalSocial Development
Volume22
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2013

Keywords

  • Peers/peer relations
  • Preschool
  • Social competence

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