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The Changing Nature of Executive Control in Preschool

The Changing Nature of Executive Control in Preschool

Kimberly Andrews Espy, Michael T. Willoughby (Commentaries by)

ISBN: 978-1-119-37902-7

Jan 2017, Wiley-Blackwell

179 pages

Select type: Paperback

In Stock

$39.99

Description

Executive control (EC) is a central construct in developmental science, although measurement limitations have hindered understanding of its nature and development in young children, relation to social risk, and prediction of important outcomes. Disentangling EC from the foundational cognitive abilities it regulates and that are inherently required for successful executive task completion (e.g., language, visual/spatial perception, and motor abilities) is particularly challenging at preschool age, when these foundational abilities are still developing and consequently differ substantially among children. A novel latent bifactor modeling approach delineated respective EC and foundational cognitive abilities components that undergird executive task performance in a socio demographically stratifi ed sample of 388 preschoolers in a longitudinal, cohort-sequential study. The bifactor model revealed a developmental shift, where both EC and foundational cognitive abilities contributed uniquely to executive task performance at ages 4.5 and 5.25 years, but were not separable at ages 3 and 3.75. Contrary to the view that EC is vulnerable to socio-familial risk, the contributions of household financial and learning resources to executive task performance were not specific to EC but were via their relation to foundational cognitive abilities. EC, though, showed a unique, discriminant relation with hyperactive symptoms late in the preschool period, whereas foundational cognitive abilities did not predict specifi c dimensions of dysregulated behavior. These findings form the basis for a new, integrated approach to the measurement and conceptualization of EC, which includes dual consideration of the contributions of EC and foundational cognitive abilities to executive task performance, particularly in the developmental context of preschool.
CONTENTS

I. EXECUTIVE CONTROL IN EARLY CHILDHOOD.........................7
C. A. C. Clark, N. Chevalier, J. M. Nelson, T. D. James,
J. P. Garza, H.-J.Choi, and K. A. Espy

II. THE PRESCHOOL PROBLEM SOLVING STUDY:
SAMPLE, DATA, AND STATISTICAL METHODS...........................30
T. D. James, H.-J.Choi, S. A. Wiebe, and K. A. Espy

III. DISTINGUISHING EXECUTIVE CONTROL
FROM OVERLAPPING FOUNDATIONAL COGNITIVE
ABILITIES DURING THE PRESCHOOL PERIOD..........................47
J. M. Nelson,T. D. James, H.-J. Choi, C. A. C. Clark,
S. A. Wiebe, and K. A. Espy

IV. A NEW LOOK AT THE IMPLICATIONS OF
THE SOCIO-FAMILIAL CONTEXT FOR YOUNG
CHILDREN’S EXECUTIVE CONTROL: CLARIFYING
THE MECHANISMS OF INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES....................69
C. A. C. Clark, T. D. James, and K. A. Espy

V. ELUCIDATING NEW PATHWAYS TO DIMENSIONS
OF ADHD SYMPTOMS IN PRESCHOOL BY JOINTLY
MODELING EXECUTIVE CONTROL AND
FOUNDATIONAL COGNITIVE ABILITIES.......................................96
J. M. Nelson, T. D. James, and K. A. Espy

VI. EXECUTIVE CONTROL IN PRESCHOOLERS:
NEW MODELS, NEW RESULTS, NEW IMPLICATIONS.................111
K. A. Espy, C. A. C. Clark, J. P. Garza, J. M. Nelson,
T. D. James, and H.-J. Choi

REFERENCES..............................................................................129

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS..............................................................150

COMMENTARY

COMMENTARY ON THE CHANGING NATURE OF
EXECUTIVE CONTROL IN PRESCHOOL.....................................151
Michael T. Willoughby

CONTRIBUTORS........................................................................166

STATEMENT OF EDITORIAL POLICY...........................................168

SUBJECT INDEX........................................................................170