Predictor Effect of Parental Authority on the Children’s Self-Care Skills


The basic purpose of this study was to examine whether there was a predictor effect of the types of authority in the relationship between mothers and their children on the levels of parental support their children’s self-care skills or not. 419 mothers with 6 years old children took part in the sample of this study. “Family Information Questionnaire”, “Parental Authority Questionnaire (PAQ)” and “Parental Support Inventory for Self-Care Skills (PSISS)” were used as data collection tools. It was identified that the types of parental authority are “permissive”, “authoritarian” and “authoritative” authorities in this study. The levels of mothers’ support in children’s self-care skills were regarded in the sub-dimensions which were “cleanliness and property”, “nutrition”, “dressing”, “personal security”, and “rest”. According to the results of this study, a significant relation was determined between the types of authority of mothers and the levels of mother’s support on children’s self-care skills. It was seen that there was a negative reasonable relationship between “permissive” and “authoritative” authority of mothers and the levels of theirs support on their children’s self-care skills. It was also conferred that there was a positive reasonable relationship mothers between “authoritarian” authority and behavior and the levels of theirs support on their children’s self-care skills. It was found that there was a predictor effect of points of authority mothers’ who have 6 years old children to points support on their children’s self-care skills.

Keywords: parental authority, self-care skills

1. Introduction

Independent life skills consist of skills which are necessary for individuals to survive without being dependent to theothers (Neistadt & Marques, 1984). Self-care skills development has an important place within the context of independent life skills (Close, Sowers, Halpern & Bourbeau, 1985). The upping of self-care skills is the biggest step on child being independent and self-confident (Howard, Williams & Lepper, 2011; McCaleb & Cull, 2000; McCaleb & Edgil, 1994). These skills have an important place on adaptation of the individuals to society and make easier the acception of individual by society. Therefore, individuals have taken an important step for a healthy of self-confident development (Humphreys, 1999). The upping of self-care skills is a part of natural growth process. This process occurs differently within children’s personality characteristics (such as getting stiff), environmental conditions (such as mother’s work pressure) and especially parental attitudes (such as being too protective theirs children) (Trawick-Swith, 2013).

Parentage is a very complement of activities which consist of countless specific attitudes and duties. Parents exhibit different attitudes, when formatting of their children’s socializing behaviors (Yörükoğlu, 1994). Parental attitudes constitute parents of behavioral patterns for their children and their kind of approaches (Bornstein & Zlotnik, 2009).

Hortaçsu (2003) indicates that parental different attitudes of parents arise from autonomy and authority relationship occurring between parent and child. In this dilemma; parent’s expectations which are obedience, independent and selfconfident from their children remark the types of parental authority (Becker, 1964; Schaefer & Bell, 1958). The attempts of children’s disobedience to the requests of their parents, the protecting of theirs authonmy and the efforts of emphasizing to be accepted in the society their autonomy comprise the autonomy of behaviors (Hortaçsu, 2003). Barber (1996) states that the process being experienced of this dilemma occurs two different dimensions which were psychological and behavioral. Psychological control is the regulating of children’s emotions and thoughts and behavioral control is the managing of children’s behaviors and activities. Baumrind’s (1978) classification with making the types of parental authority has built a theoretical basic to studies which are made in the area of parental authority. Baumrind has revealed the three basic parental authorities which are permissive, authoritarian and authoritative authority. Permissive parents have the control of lower level on their children’s development. They give too much freedom to their children. They don’t control their children’s behavior and also are not aware towards their children’s needs. Rules are not clear and also they are extremely flexible (Baumrind & Black, 1967; Darling & Steinberg, 1993; Maccoby & Martin, 1983).

Authoritarian parents have the control of higher level on their children’s behavior. It is expected that children obey to rules with recklessly and unconditionally. It is seen often limiter and restrictor behaviors on authoritarian parents. The showing of this parents’ interest to their children is very few, whereas expectations from children are too much when the interests shown to children is too few (Baumrind, 1966; Bornstein & Zlotnik, 2009). Authoritative parents support children’s autonomy attainment and children’s freedom, and also they are sensitive of their children’s needs. It is accepted child’s individuality and are respected it. It is communicated between parent and child mutually and clearly. It is supported children’s freedom and also believed that hard and physical punishments damage to children’s individuality and personality (Baumrind, 1996; Johnson, 2006; Weiten, Lloyd, Dunn & Hammer, 2009).

It is meant that the self-care skills result from wonder, others’ direction and control and personal experiences (Fawcett, 2005). Velioğlu (1999) emphasize that the self-care skills are supported, guided and got an environment which are promoted children’s development by adults. Children are encouraged the activity of issues by parents (Beyazova & Kutsal, 2000). First experiences with the upping of self-care skills are presented at home by parents. Therefore, parents’

attitudes of relation with their children are of capital importance on the upping of children’s self-care skills.

1.1. Purpose of the Study

In the process of development, obtaining of self-care skills by child without helping of adult or adult’s direction are essential. Because acquired these self-care skills affect other development skills and children will use these skills during their lives (Yalçın, Başar & Çetinkaya, 2013). The development of self-care skills which starts early ages in children life, it shows to be freedom from their parents (Varol, 2004). It is necessary healthy experiences with self-care skills to develop these skills as desired (Konya, 2007). Family members should awake to their responsibility in this subject. It should be offered enough opportunities to children. Mothers get tasks about the upping of behavior related to the self-care skills which are built on early ages (Dinçer & Demiriz, 2000). When the literature was conducted in that field survey, it could not coincide with any study about effects of authority types of parents on their children's self-care skills. The predictor effect of the types of authority in the relationships between parents and their children on the levels of support self-care skills was analyzed in this study. Therefore, the following questions were investigated to response this purpose:

1) Is there a predictor effect of mothers with permissive authority to the levels of their support on their children’s

2) self-care skills?

Is there a predictor effect of mothers with authoritarian authority to the levels of their support on their children’s

3) self-care skills?

Is there a predictor effect of mothers with authoritative authority to the levels of their support on their children’s

self-care skills?

2. Methodology

2.1. Sample

The sample of this study was constituted to be selected randomly mothers who have 6 years age children from schools attached to The Ministry of National Education in Erzincan. 419 mothers have taken part in the sample of this study. According to the result of "Family Information Questionnaire" which was applied to mothers, the descriptive informations about mothers and their children are below that:

-40.3% of mothers were 20-30 years, 48.2% of them were 31-40 years, 5.5% of them were 41-50 years and 6.0% of

them were 51-60 years.

-3.5% of mothers were literate, 55.4% of mothers were graduated from primary school, 21.4% of mothers were graduated from high school, 18.1% of mothers were graduated from university and 1.6% of mothers were postgraduate/doctorate.

-Family income statues; it was described that 27.2% of mothers was low-income, 31.1% of family low-middle-income, 28.2% of mothers was middle-income, 10.1% of mothers was high-middle-income and 3.4% of mothers was wealthy.

-36.7% of mothers was village-born, 9.6% of mothers was small town-born, 4.9% of mothers was country-born and

48.8% of mothers was city-born.

-52.7% of parents had daughter, 47.3% of them had boy.

-17% of parents had one child, 45.5% of them had 2 children and 37.5% of them had 3 and more than 3 children.

-The average of children’s age was 6 year 4 month.


Data were obtained via “Family Information Questionnaire”, “Parental Authority Questionnaire” and “Parental Support Inventory for Self-Care Skills”. Before the collection of data, mothers had been informed about the purpose of this study and the instrument of surveys. Surveys were filled individually by mothers.

2.2.1. Family Information Questionnaire

"Family Information Questionnaire" has been developed under study. It has been aimed to collect some information about mothers who participated the survey. It has been purposed to reach mothers’ age, educational background and place of birth, family income statues, the number of children, children’s age and sex with the survey.

2.2.2. Parental Authority Questionnaire (PAQ)

PAQ was developed by Dr. Buri (1991) to determine the types of authority which mothers and fathers use while they bringing up their children. Studies with the adaptation of “Parental Authority Questionnaire” in Turkey sample was made by Yurtsever (2009). In scale, types of parental authority were defined in three different sizes which were "permissive", "authoritarian" and "authoritative". The scale consists of 30 items in the structure of 5 point Likert scale. Cronbach

Alpha’s values in the application of the scale of parental authority related to mothers was found .89 in permissive subdimension .85 in authoritarian sub-dimension and .87 in authoritative sub-dimension. The application reliability the scale of parental authority on mothers in different times was discovered between .95 and .98. (Kılıçgün-Yurtsever & Oktay, 2012).

2.2.3. Parental Support Inventory for Self-Care Skills (PSISS)

PSISS was developed by Kılıçgün-Yurtsever (2013) to determine which levels of mothers and fathers’ support their

36-72 months children’s skills of self-care. Self-care skills in the inventory was evaluated with regarding the terms as

“cleaning and order” (19 items), “nutrition” (14 items), “dressing” (16 items), “personal security” (8 items), and “rest” (5 items). The level of explanation inventory to parental support in the self-care skills is 49.52%, the criterion validity of it is

.89 and inside coefficient of consistence of Cronbach-alpha which is made for the security of it is .96 (Kılıçgün-Yurtsever, 2013).

2.3. Data Analysis

In table 3 it was seen negative and moderate correlation (R=.69, R2=.48, F=388.10, p<.01) between authoritative authority scores of mothers and parents’ support scores for children self-care skills. While authoritative authority scores of mothers increased, the parental support scores on children's self-care skills were declined (Standardized β=-.69, p<.01). Explanation of total variance by authoritative authority scores of mothers was 47% in "cleanliness and property” subdimension, 46% in "nutrition” sub-dimension, 49% in "dressing" sub-dimension, 49% in "personal security" subdimension, 44% in "resting" sub-dimension and authoritative authority can explain 48% of "total scale score". According to the results, it was seen authoritative authority scores of mothers had a predictive power on parental support on self-care skills of children.

4. Discussion, Conclusions and Recommendations

In this study it was examined whether there was a predictor effect of the types of authority on the levels of parental support on children’s self-care skills or not. The levels of mother’s support on their children’s self-care skills were handled regarding the terms as “cleanliness and property”, “nutrition”, “dressing”, “personal security”, and “rest” under this study.

Parents who have the permissive authority adopt to be acceptable, not punishing and within positive approach to the against children’s negative behaviors, desires and movements. Parents have responsibilities in the family environments with permissive authority in order to change children’s behaviors, form and make theirs future behaviors (Baumrind, 1978). Hence, between mother’s owned permissive authority point with parental support on children’s self-care skills was found a negative significant relationship in this study. Kağıtçıbaşı (1990) remarks that there is scarce parents’ who have the permissive authority reviews on their children and they have importance about children’s socializations. However, permissive authority carries with weaknesses in relation parents and children, because the relation parents and children is contacted when there is a need care and protection (Yavuzer, 1999). Faber (2002) and Kılıçgün-Yurtsever and Oktay (2009) state that although parents who have the permissive authority exhibit attitudes towards children’s care and protection, they don’t have authority till parents who have authoritative authority.

Parents who own authoritarian authority exhibit attitudes like muscularly and punishment when their thinking’s and desires make children. Responsibilities that are given children are followed closely. Children’s behaviors was made by an adult and controlled to specific standards, formed and changed. Children’s place in the family are determined by parent and the obedience is regarded too much (Baumrind, 1978b). Thus, between mother’s owned authoritarian authority point

with parental support on children’s self-care skills was found a positive significant relationship in this study. This finding is supported indirectly by articles in this area. It is reported that children who grow up in parent’s environment within authoritarian authority have low self-confident (Eisenberg at all., 2005) and theirs skills are not enough (Ogelman, Önder, Seçer, & Erten, 2013).

Parents who are authoritative authority have importance to converse with their children and show attentions to children’s interests and desires. The discipline and children’s self-determination are so important in authoritative authority. Children are encouraged with actual applications. When children’s behests are refused, the reason of this rejection is explained to children (Baumrind, 1978). Therefore, between mother’s owned authoritative authority point with parental support on children’s self-care skills was found a negative significant relationship in this study. Kağıtçıbaşı (1990) shows that internalized self-control are valued and it consists of family interaction autonomy in the authoritative authority’s discipline. Faber (2002) states that it is necessary to children’s right to speak in healthy relation between family and children. Yavuzer (2010) says that children discovery their environment, mature like adult in the interpersonal actions and improve themselves without worrying when authoritative authority is used in the relation between family and children. So children awake to obedience, being independent and self-confident expectations and succeed internalized self-control (Schaefer & Bell, 1958, Yavuzer, 1995). When this finding and articles are taken into consideration, it is thought that mothers permit their children freedom within reasonable bounds and support the level of needed their children’s self-care skills in the relationship between mothers owned authoritative authority and their children. Furthermore Baumrind (1991), Dumas and LaFreniere (1993) and Putallaz and Heflin (1990) defines that personal reliability, self-respect, success, motivation and communication skills on authoritative authority parent’s children are higher than others. Day, Peterson-Badali and Ruck, (2006) and Kılıçgün-Yurtsever and Oktay (2009) say that mothers owned authoritative authority exhibit attitudes to their children’s self-determinations.

In conclusion, the finding of this study shows that it is thought children growing up in family environments who have permissive and authoritative authoritarian authority are more perfect on self-care skills than children who have authoritarian authority parents. Moreover, these findings will make a huge contribution to variables which affect children’s self-care development.

4.1. Limitation of study and recommendation for future studies on this topic:

The limitations of this study were; planned as cross-sectional, worked with mothers who have 6 years age of children and come up parental support of children’s self-care skills. The study can be actualized on different sample groups such as fathers. The recommendation for future studies; the effects of children’s variables such as age, sex, sibling case and socioeconomic status could be determined. Otherwise, the effect of parental authority on relation between mothers and their children with this study planned longitudinal could be examined.


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Yurtsever Kilicgun, M., & Kilickaya, A. (2014). Predictor Effect of Parental Authority on the Children’s Self-Care Skills. In Z. Bekirogullari, & M. Y. Minas (Eds.), Cognitive - Social, and Behavioural Sciences – icCSBs 2014, vol 1. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 60-68). Future Academy.