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ERIC Number: EJ1145998
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Jul
Pages: 9
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0165-0254
Changing Attitudes about Spanking Using Alternative Biblical Interpretations
Perrin, Robin; Miller-Perrin, Cindy; Song, Jeongbin
International Journal of Behavioral Development, v41 n4 p514-522 Jul 2017
Social scientists are generally in agreement that spanking is not an especially effective method of discipline and is associated with a variety of behavioral and mental health problems in children. Interventions that have focused on disseminating this empirical research have met with some success in changing pro-spanking attitudes. However, given the strong connection between conservative Christian religious orientation and pro-spanking attitudes and behaviors, many conservative Christians may not be compelled by the empirical research. The current study examined the effectiveness of two interventions: an "empirical research intervention" that focused on the empirical evidence of the ineffectiveness and potential harm of spanking, and a "religion intervention" that provided a progressive interpretation of biblical passages that are sometimes used by Christians to justify spanking. A sample of 121 college students (87% female; 34% male; Mage = 20) attending a private, Christian, liberal arts university were randomly assigned to one of three intervention conditions: 1) Research Only, 2) Research and Religion, and 3) Control. Four weeks prior to the intervention sessions, students completed a demographic form and the Attitudes Toward Spanking (ATS) scale. Following the intervention, students completed the ATS scale a second time. Repeated measures ANOVA indicated a significant Time × Condition interaction for ATS scores, indicating that ATS scores decreased in both the Research Only condition (Mpre = 40.56, Mpost = 37.03) and the Research and Religion condition (Mpre = 41.23; Mpost = 33.29) but not the Control condition (Mpre = 40.17; Mpost = 40.78), F(2, 78) = 10.03, p = 0.001. Subsequent analyses indicated that ATS scores in both intervention conditions decreased compared to the control condition and that a greater decrease in favorable attitudes toward spanking was observed for the Research and Religion condition compared to the Research Only condition.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A