Date of Award

Spring 2013

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Musical Arts (DMA)

Department

Department of Graduate Psychology

Advisor(s)

Elena Savina

Craig N. Shealy

Trevor F. Stokes

Abstract

This study explored emotion regulation strategies in middle school European American (N = 54) and Hong Kong Chinese (N =89) children. Based on Gross’s theory (1998), the Survey of Emotion Regulation Strategies was designed to study children’s perceived effectiveness of emotion regulation strategies (deep breathing, thinking positively, situation avoidance, talking and suppression) in three fictitious scenarios associated with sadness, anger, and fear. Five mixed ANOVAs were conducted to evaluate the effect of culture, gender and the type of emotion on each emotion regulation strategy. The results demonstrated that American children considered deep breathing more effective in dealing with anger than with sad feelings; whereas Chinese children—in dealing with anger and fear than with sadness. Overall, American children scored higher than Chinese children for thinking positively, talking to someone, and situation avoidance strategies. However, both American and Chinese children preferred situation avoidance in dealing with anger then with fear and sadness and talking to somebody in dealing with anger and sadness than with fear. Children’s explanations of why emotion regulation strategies were effective or ineffective were also explored.

Included in

Psychology Commons

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