Date of Award
Maria T. Riva, Ph.D.
Loneliness, School liking, Shyness, Social anxiety
Shyness is associated with several emotional, social, and academic problems. While there are multiple difficulties that often accompany shyness, there appear to be some factors that can moderate negative effects of shyness. Research has demonstrated that certain parenting factors affect the adjustment of shy children in early childhood, but there is minimal research illuminating the effect of parenting factors in older age groups. The first purpose of this study was to examine relationships between shyness and loneliness, social anxiety, and school liking. The second purpose was to investigate whether the quality of the relationship between a parent and a 10- to 15-year-olds child influences the amount of loneliness or social anxiety a shy child experiences or how the child feels about school. Parent-child dyads served as participants and were recruited from public and private middle schools and church youth groups in Colorado and Indiana. Child participants completed several self-report surveys regarding their relationship with a parent, shyness, loneliness, social anxiety, and their attitude toward school. Parents completed a survey about their relationship with their child and responded to questions related to their perceptions of their child's shyness. Data was analyzed with a series of correlation and regression analyses. Greater degrees of self-reported shyness were found to be associated with higher levels of loneliness and social anxiety and less positive feelings about school. Due to a problem with multicollinearity during data analysis, this study was not able to explore the effect of the parent-child relationship quality on the associations between shyness and adjustment factors. Overall, these findings imply that shyness remains an important issue as children approach adolescence. Further research is needed to continue learning about the potential importance of parent-child interactions in reducing maladjustment for shy children during late childhood.
Walker, Charity M., "The Impact of Shyness on Loneliness, Social Anxiety, and School Liking in Late Childhood" (2011). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 948.
Received from ProQuest
Charity M. Walker