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ERIC Number: EJ1001955
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Dec
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 50
ISSN: ISSN-1836-9391
Is Quality More Important If You're Quirky? A Review of the Literature on Differential Susceptibility to Childcare Environments
Davis, Elspeth; Eivers, Areana; Thorpe, Karen
Australasian Journal of Early Childhood, v37 n4 p99-106 Dec 2012
Evidence concerning the impact of child care on child development suggests that higher-quality environments, particularly those that are more responsive, predict more favourable social and behavioural outcomes. However, the extent of this effect is not as great as might be expected. Impacts on child outcomes are, at best, modest. One recent explanation emerging from a new theoretical perspective of development, differential susceptibility theory, is that a minority of children are more reactive to both positive and negative environments, while the majority are relatively unaffected. These "quirky" children have temperamental traits that are more extreme, and are often described in research studies as having "difficult temperaments". This paper reviews the literature on such children and argues for the need for further research to identify components of childcare environments that optimise the potential of these more sensitive, quirky individuals. (Contains 2 figures.)
Early Childhood Australia. P.O. Box 7105, Watson, ACT 2602, Australia. Tel: +61-2-6242-1800; Fax: +61-2-6242-1818; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Early Childhood Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia