The Moderating Effects of Parenting Practices on the Relationship Between Child Personality Traits and Academic Achievement

Date of Submission


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)



Department Chair

Stephanie Felgoise, PhD, ABPP

First Advisor

Elizabeth Gosch, PhD, ABPP

Second Advisor

Susan Mindel, PhD

Third Advisor

Michael Roberts, PsyD


Evidence over the past several decades has shown that parenting influences childhood developmental outcomes. Much is known about the influence of parenting on child trait expression, as well as on child academic performance. However, less is known about the moderating effects of parenting practices and child personality traits on academic achievement in middle childhood. A correlational moderation model examined the interaction effects between parenting practices and personality traits on academic achievement. The sample of participants consisted predominantly of English-speaking parents in the United States (N= 125; New Zealand, N= 1; Australia, N=1), who had children between the ages of 10 and 14 years old who were attending school. Parents completed the Vanderbilt Assessment Scale-Performance subscale, the Big Five Inventory, and the Parent-Child Relationship Questionnaire. Multiple regressions were used to analyze two specific hypotheses examining the moderating effects of parental disciplinary warmth and parental power assertion on child conscientiousness traits and academic performance. Findings did not support parenting practices as moderators, but did support previous studies’ findings of a significant, positive relationship between conscientiousness and academic performance in school. Although parenting practices did not moderate the relationship, there appears to be an indirect relationship that is occurring between certain parenting practices, conscientiousness, and academic performance. The differential findings may have been attributed to the way parenting was measured and operationalized in this study.

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