ERIC Number: EJ1002477
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013-Jun
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 120
Age at Adoption from Institutional Care as a Window into the Lasting Effects of Early Experiences
Julian, Megan M.
Clinical Child and Family Psychology Review, v16 n2 p101-145 Jun 2013
One of the major questions of human development is how early experience impacts the course of development years later. Children adopted from institutional care experience varying levels of deprivation in their early life followed by qualitatively better care in an adoptive home, providing a unique opportunity to study the lasting effects of early deprivation and its timing. The effects of age at adoption from institutional care are discussed for multiple domains of social and behavioral development within the context of several prominent developmental hypotheses about the effects of early deprivation (cumulative effects, experience-expectant developmental programming, and experience-adaptive developmental programming). Age at adoption effects are detected in a majority of studies, particularly when children experienced global deprivation and were assessed in adolescence. For most outcomes, institutionalization beyond a certain age is associated with a step-like increase in risk for lasting social and behavioral problems, with the step occurring at an earlier age for children who experienced more severe levels of deprivation. Findings are discussed in terms of their concordance and discordance with our current hypotheses, and speculative explanations for the findings are offered.
Descriptors: Children, Age, Adoption, Disadvantaged Environment, Early Experience, Child Development, Residential Institutions, Social Development, Adolescents, Correlation, Risk, Behavior Problems
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A