Latent profile analysis of observed parenting behaviors in a clinic sample

Lindsay A. Borden, Keith C. Herman, Melissa Stormont, Nidhi Goel, Dana Darney, Wendy M. Reinke, Carolyn Webster-Stratton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


We examined typologies of parenting practices using latent profile analysis (LPA) in a sample of families with young children who had externalizing behavior disorders. We also examined mother and child characteristics associated with class membership using ratings from multiple informants. The sample included pooled data from five parenting treatment outcome research studies on oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) and/or conduct disorder (CD) conducted throughout the past 20 years. These studies included 21 separate cohorts of children resulting in a total of 514 families. All children met diagnostic criteria for ODD or CD and 78 % were male. Parenting practices were observed by independent raters using the Dyadic Parent-child Interactive Coding System-Revised (DPICS-R). Four summary scores (i.e., total critical statements, total commands, total positive, total supportive) from the DPICS-R were used as class indictors in the LPA. Four classes best characterized the parenting practices of this clinic sample, roughly comprising a quarter of the sample each: Positive Only, Negative Only, Positive/Negative, and Neither Positive/Negative. High observed child negative behaviors, low observed child warmth, high socioeconomic status, and low academic performance distinguished the two classes with high negative behaviors (Negative Only, Positive/Negative) from the other classes. These results provide markers of the most common parenting profiles at entry into treatment programs for behavior disorders in young children. Findings have significant implications for the tailoring parenting interventions and supports to specific family needs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)731-742
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Abnormal Child Psychology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jul 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Clinic sample
  • Externalizing problems
  • Latent profile analysis
  • Parenting practices
  • Young children

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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