2013. Vol.4, No.6, 535-540
Published Online June 2013 in SciRes (
Copyright © 2013 SciRes. 535
Can Parenting Styles and Dimensions Questionnaire (PSDQ) Be
Used in China?*
Yixiao Fu1, Xiao Hou2, Qing Qin1, Huaqing Meng1#, Peng Xie3#, Yi Huang4,
Xiaohong Ma4, Wei Deng4, Qinghua Luo1, Yingcheng Wang4, Hua Hu1, Lian Du1,
Haitang Qiu1, Tian Qiu1, Tao Li4#
1Mental Health Center, The First Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, China
2Chongqing Medical and Pharmaceutical College, Chongqing, China
3Department of neurology, The First Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, China
4Mental Health Center, West China Hospital, Sichuan University, Chengdu, China
Received January 26th, 2013; revised February 27th, 2013; accepted March 26th, 2013
Copyright © 2013 Yixiao Fu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attri-
bution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the
original work is properly cited.
Objective: To evaluate the validity and reliability of the Chinese version of PSDQ (Parenting Styles and
Dimensions Questionnaire, PSDQ). Method: 443 parents of children aged 6 to 16 who lived in Chongqing
were selected. .52 of them were retested 6 weeks later in order to assess the retest reliability. Determina-
tion of reliability included: internal consistency: to calculate Cronbach coefficient; coefficient of retest re-
liability: to calculate person correlation of results in every subscale in twice measurements of 52 parents.
Determination of validity: content validity, structural validity, confirmatory factor analysis. Results: For
each subscale and factor, the values of kappa for inter-rater reliability were between .625 and .884 (p
< .05); the values of retest reliability were between .537 and .832 (p < .05); The scores of the subscale of
PSDQ were correlated with each factor significantly (coefficient of correlation: .732 - .951, p < .05), and
the correlation coefficient was more than those between each factor of this subscale (correlation coeffi-
cient: .382 - .834, p < .05). The confirmatory factor analysis of PSDQ showed the result met the criteria
standard for adequacy of fit. (CMIN/df: 2.218 - 3.745; TLI: .808 - .920; RMSEA: .052 - .079; MECVI of
default model was very close to that of saturated model, most of proliferation index were more than .8).
Conclusion: Parenting Style and Dimensions Questionnaire (PSDQ), in line with requirements of psy-
chometric, had good reliability and validity and was useful as a tool to evaluate the parenting styles for
Keywords: Parenting Style; Parenting Styles and Dimensions Questionnaire; Reliability; Validity
During the period of children’s growth and development, the
parents are the children’s first teachers. Parents’ attitude to the
children, manners and behaviors directly affect the children’s
personality and temperament shaping as well as mental health
development, which has been paid extensive attention from
related fields such as education and medicine, but domestic
researches focusing on parenting styles and the adolescents
(Wang & Yuan, 2008; Bi, Wang, Yang, & Wang, 2007) per-
sonality, psychology, emotion and behavior are few. However,
most information on parenting styles is obtained from Egma
Minnen av Bardndosnauppforstran (EMBU) (Yue, Li, Jin, &
Ding, 1993) whose respondent is children (object’s evaluation),
thus, the basis of parenting intervention theory is weak because
the information is obtained indirectly. Besides, the respondents
are small to be biased to their parents’ evaluation because the
scale is suitable for the respondents who are over 14 years old
and can understand the questions. The restriction on the re-
spondents’ age results in more researches on the middle school
students and college students’ parents’ parenting and their
mental issues, personality and socialization, but few researches
on young children’s family environment. However, an individ-
ual’s personality development and mental development are
directly related to the parents’ early parenting, so local version
of the parenting scale (Xia & Liu, 2004) is intended to develop,
but it is not widely applied because of the scale itself. In addi-
tion, the research on family environment also needs be in line
with internationalization, therefore, it is necessary to introduce
mature and comprehensive parenting scale with the parents
themselves as the respondents.
Parenting Style & Dimensions Questionnaire was developed
by Robinson and Mandleco in 1995, which was internationally
recognized as one of the scales with the parents as the respon-
dents to evaluate the parenting style. Since it is developed, the
scale has been revised and used by scholars all over the world
and is demonstrated to have good reliability and validity (Rob-
inson, Mandleco, & Olsen, 2001). Therefore, this research aims
to translate the scale into Chinese and measure its reliability
and validity to hope to provide an effective assessment tool to
*Grant from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (81101025).
#Corresponding authors.
measure Chinese children’s family environment.
Objective and Methods
Method of cluster sampling was used to select 443 parents of
6 - 16 years old children who were full-time students in key
primary school, key middle school, ordinary primary school,
ordinary middle school and occupation high school in main city
zone of Chongqing during the period of February to June, 2008.
Inclusion standard: mother (or father) whose child was 6 - 16
years old and student accepted education for all the people and
could fully understand the content of scale. Exclusion standard:
mother (or father) who could not participate in the test because
of physical diseases and mental illnesses.
This study was approved by Ethics Committee of Chongqing
Medical University and the parents participated in the survey
after they signed written informed consent.
Introduction and Translation of the Scale
Parenting Style and Dimensions Questionnaire, with 62
items evaluated using 5 points, was used for father or mother to
evaluate his or her and spouse/partner’s attitude to frequency of
children’s some behaviors, aiming to mainly understand the
parenting styles. 3 parenting styles, authoritative parenting,
authoritarian parenting and permissive parenting were further
divided into 11 factors (dimensions). Authoritative parenting
included 27 items which were divided into 4 factors: passion
and concentration, rationality/guidance, democratic participa-
tion and good nature/kindness. Authoritarian parenting included
20 items which were divided into 4 factors: verbal confronta-
tion, corporal punishment, irrationality/or punitive strategy and
command. Permissive parenting included 15 items (among of
which, 3 items with reverse scoring) which were divided into 3
factors: no persistence, ignorance of inappropriate behaviors
and lack of confidence. The approach of translation and back-
translation procedure were used to compare the Chinese vision
of scale and the original scale. The scale was formally used
until the version of back-transition was basically close to the
original scale.
Formal Test with Chinese Version of Parenting Style and
Dimensions Questionnaire
The method of cluster sampling was used to select 70 parents
from ordinary primary school, key primary school, ordinary
middle school and key middle school respectively and 120
parents from occupation high school as the subjects. The scale
was given out to the students by the teacher in charge of the
class and then brought home by the students. The scale was
filled out by the students’ father or mother (For the parents,
there were written detailed instructions and informed consent as
well as an envelope which could be returned back according to
the parent’s willing). Within two days, the answer sheets were
recycled and the invalid questionnaires were cancelled. 6 weeks
later, 60 subjects were retested and 52 valid questionnaires
were obtained.
Validity and Reliability Assessment of Chinese Version of
Parenting Style and Dimensions Questionnaire
Reliability test included homogeneity reliability: calculating
the Cronbach coefficient of the total scale and subscales;
test-retest reliability: calculating the Spearson correlation coef-
ficient of 52 students’ parents’ scores of each subscale 6 weeks
before and after. Validity test was to calculate the Spearson
correlation coefficient between each subscale and each factor as
well as Spearson correlation coefficient between factors. Con-
firmatory factor analysis was to analyze the content validity and
construct validity of the scale.
Statistical Method
Paired t-test was used to evaluate the test-retest reliability
and Cronbacha coefficient was used to estimate internal con-
sistency. Total validity and content validity were analyzed with
Pearson correlation. All above were analyzed with SPSS 16.0
and confirmatory factor analysis was analyzed with AMOS7.0.
General Description of the Data
443 valid questionnaires were obtained from the students’
parents. The distribution of subjects’ (parents) children’s
schools was as follows: 51 students from key primary school
(11.5%), 65 students from ordinary primary school (14.8%), 56
students from key middle school (12.6%), 57 students from
ordinary middle school (12.7% ), 60 students from key high
school (13.5%), 53 students from ordinary high school (12%),
101 students from occupation high school (23%); the students’
average age was 12.37 + 3.53 years old; among the parents, fa-
thers accounted for 189 (occupation including: administrative
management: 7.5%; business: 13.9%; service industry: 9.7%;
professional technology: 17.5%; worker: 10.1% ) and mothers
accounted for 254 (occupation including: administrative man-
agement: 6.9%; business: 14.3%; service industry: 9.9%; pro-
fessional technology: 11.5%; worker: 15.7%).
Reliability Test of Chinese Version of Parenting Style
and Dimensions Questionnaire
Internal reliability (Cronbach α) of each subscale was be-
tween .634 and .783 (internal reliability of each factor of sub-
scales: .626 - .866) and test-retest reliability were between .537
and .832 (test-retest reliability of each factor of subscales: .537
- .832) (see Table 1).
Validity Test of Chinese Version of Parenting Style
and Dimensions Questionnaire
Because there was no quantified tool for parenting style
measurement based on Baumrind model, criterion-related va-
lidity was not included into reliability indexes in this research
and content validity, construct validity and confirmatory factor
analysis were analyzed as the evaluation indexes of reliability.
Content Validity
In authoritative parenting subscale, authoritarian parenting
subscale and permissive parenting subscale, the correlation
coefficients between each factor and subscale were between .732
and .951, which was found to be relatively high (p < .01) (see
Tables 2-7).
Structure Validity
The correlations between authoritative parenting subscale,
Copyright © 2013 SciRes.
Copyright © 2013 SciRes. 537
Table 1.
Reliability test of authoritative parenting subscale of Chinese version of Parenting Style and Dimensions Questionnaire (PSDQ).
Factors and subscales Cronbachα Test-retest reliability Factors and subscales Cronbachα
coefficient Test-retest reliability
Father’s score of
authoritative parenting .871 .665 Mother’s score of
authoritative parenting .857 .728
Father’s score of
authoritarian parenting .884 .698 Mother’s score of
authoritarian parenting .868 .783
Father’s score of
permissive parenting .805 .634 Mother’s score of
permissive parenting .803 .728
Table 2.
Correlation matrix of father’s authoritative parenting subscale and each factor.
Subscales and factors Father’s passion and
Father’s rationality and
Father’s democratic
Father’s good
Father’s authoritative
parenting subscale
Factor 1: Father’s passion and
concentration 1 .748(**) .793 (**) .764 (**) .951 (**)
Factor 2: Father’s rationality and
guidance .748 (**) 1 .724 (**) .656 (**) .880 (**)
Factor 3: Father’s democratic
participation .793 (**) .724 (**) 1 .679 (**) .885 (**)
Factor 4: Father’s good
nature/kindness .764 (**) .656 (**) .679 (**) 1 .838 (**)
Father’s authoritative
parenting subscale .951 (**) .880 (**) .885 (**) .838 (**) 1
Table 3.
Correlation matrix of mother’s authoritative parenting subscale and each factor.
Mother ’s passion and
Mother’s rationality
and guidance
Mother’s democratic
Mother’s good
Mother’s authoritative
parenting subscale
Factor 1: Mother ’s passion
and concentration 1 .718 (**) .745 (**) .750 (**) .943 (**)
Factor 2: Mother ’s rationality
and guidance .718 (**) 1 .674 (**) .640 (**) .866 (**)
Factor 3: Mother ’s democratic
participation .745 (**) .674 (**) 1 .635 (**) .856 (**)
Factor 4: Mother ’s good
nature/kindness .750 (**) .640 (**) .635 (**) 1 .829 (**)
Mother ’s authoritative
parenting subscale .943 (**) .866 (**) .856 (**) .829 (**) 1
Table 4.
Correlation matrix of father’s authoritarian parenting subscale and each factor.
Father’s verbal
Father’s corporal
punishment Father’s irrationality Father’s order Father’s authoritarian
parenting subscale
Factor 1: Father’s verbal
confrontation 1 .717 (**) .680 (**) .637 (**) .842 (**)
Factor 2: Father’s
corporal punishment .717 (**) 1 .832 (**) .607 (**) .939 (**)
Factor 3: Father’s irrationality .680 (**) .832 (**) 1 .566 (**) .919 (**)
Factor 4: Father’s order .637 (**) .607 (**) .566 (**) 1 .752 (**)
Father’s authoritarian
parenting subscale .842 (**) .939 (**) .919 (**) .752 (**) 1
Table 5.
Correlation matrix of mother’s authoritarian parenting subscale and each factor.
Mother’s verbal
Mother’s corporal
punishment Mother’s irrationalityMother’s order Mother’s authoritarian
parenting subscale
Factor 1: Mother’s verbal
confrontation 1 .709 (**) .670 (**) .657 (**) .844 (**)
Factor 2: Mother’s corporal
punishment .709 (**) 1 .834 (**) .574 (**) .936 (**)
Factor 3: Mother’s irrationality .670 (**) .834 (**) 1 .544 (**) .917 (**)
Factor 4: Mother’s order .657 (**) .574 (**) .544 (**) 1 .739 (**)
Mother’s authoritarian parenting .844 (**) .936 (**) .917 (**) .739 (**) 1
Table 6.
Correlation matrix of father’s permissive parenting subscale and each factor.
Father’s no
Father’s ignorance of
inappropriate behaviors Father’s lack of confidenceFather’s permissive
parenting subscale
Factor 1: Father’s no persistence 1 .647 (**) .474 (**) .902 (**)
Factor 2: Father’s ignorance of
inappropriate behaviors .647 (**) 1 .382 (**) .830 (**)
Factor: Father’s lack of confidence .474 (**) .382(**) 1 .709 (**)
Father’s permissive parenting
subscale .902 (**) .830 (**) .709 (**) 1
Table 7.
Correlation matrix of mother’s permissive parenting subscale and each factor.
Mother’s no
Mother ’s ignorance of
inappropriate behaviors
Mother ’s lack of
Mother ’s permissive
parenting subscale
Factor 1: Mother’s no persistence 1 .644 (**) .478 (**) .895 (**)
Factor 2: Mother ’s ignorance of
inappropriate behaviors .644 (**) 1 .400 (**) .825 (**)
Factor 3: Mother ’s lack of confidence .478 (**) .400 (**) 1 .732 (**)
Mother ’s permissive parenting subscale.895 (**) .825 (**) .732 (**) 1
authoritarian parenting subscale and permissive parenting sub-
scale and each factor were higher than that between two factors
respectively. The correlation coefficients among each factor
were between .382 and .834, which was found to be relatively
high (p < .01) (see Tables 2-7).
Factor Analysis
The factor analysis is to confirm the theoretical model of
scale if factors exist. Parenting Style and Dimensions Ques-
tionnaire (PSDQ) was proved to have good reliability and va-
lidity in foreign countries, namely, with mature theoretical
framework, so this study only aimed to verify whether the
theoretical framework was suitable for China’s national condi-
tions and cultural background and confirmatory factor analysis
was used to verify the theoretical model of PSDQ. Each index
of model fitting saw Table 8.
Children’s personality formation, psychological development
and social development start from the family. Under the par-
ents’ influence and guidance, children obtain the initial experi-
ence, knowledge, norms and habits from the family. Family is
the earliest and basic educator and performer for the children.
Among a lot of family factors, parenting style is the most im-
portant factor to affect the children’s development, which has
long been paid wide attention.
Parenting style refers to a tendency of parenting behaviors
shown in the daily education and child care, which is the com-
prehensive reflection of the parenting concepts and behaviors
and high generation of parents’ various parenting behaveiors
(Nadien, 1993) as well as a stable behavior style. Parenting
style involves how the parents treat the children’s requests and
punish the children, requirement on the children’s achievement
as well as education of children, etc. (Taosa, 1994).
Development psychologist of American University of Cali-
fornia Baumrind (Baumrind, 1991) (1967, 1971, 1977) carried
a study three times. She integrated two parameters: the parents’
requirement and response to the children to propose three kinds
of parenting style with relatively great influence: authoritative
parenting, permissive parenting and authoritarian parenting.
Authoritative parents think the parents should have authority in
Copyright © 2013 SciRes.
Table 8.
Confirmatory factor analysis of father’s authoritative parenting subscale of PSDQ.
Default Model CMIN DF P CMIN/DFNF Delta1RFI rho1IFI Delta2 TLI rho2 CFI RMSEA
Father’s authoritative parenting
subscale 705.312 318 .000 2.218 .856 .828 .915 .898 .914 .052
Father’s authoritarian
parenting subscale 459.899 164 .000 2.804 .899 .870 .932 .913 .932 .064
Father’s permissive parenting
subscale 325.773 87 .000 3.745 .770 .872 .820 .870 .870 .079
Mother’s authoritative
parenting subscale 750.372 318 .000 2.360 .829 .797 .894 .872 .892 .055
Mother’s authoritarian
parenting subscale 430.521 164 .000 2.625 .903 .876 .938 .920 .937 .061
Mother ’s permissive
parenting subscale 322.371 87 .000 3.705 .822 .754 .863 .808 .861 .078
their own children’s heart, but this authority comes from their
understanding and respect to the children, frequent communica-
tion with the children, help to the children and right attitude to
the children’s requirements. Permissive parents give the chil-
dren the biggest freedom on behavior and do not restrict the
children’s development. They rarely propose requirements to
the children and think that the respect to the children’s personal
willing is the most important. And even they may leave the
children alone and rarely adopt reward and punishments. Be-
sides, they communicate with children, but the relationship is
indifferent. Authoritarian parents press the children’s personal-
ity and often adopt force as the means to make the children take
the orders from the parents, hope the children to grow accord-
ing to the parents’ ideas and protect and supervise all the chil-
dren’s behaviors, which is a “control” and “controlled” rela-
tionship, so the child has no right to speak. If the children vio-
late the parents’ willing, they shall be punished strictly.
Parenting Style and Dimensions Questionnaire (PSDQ), with
good reliability and validity, was developed based on Baum-
rind’s theory to be widely used in the world.
This study aimed to test the reliability and validity of Chi-
nese version of scale based on the sample of 443 students’ par-
ents in Chongqing. Reliability refers to the degree of repro-
ducibility of test scores of the same measurement or duplicate
in different time or consistency of related measurements in
retest. Homogeneity reliability (Cronbach a coefficient) and
test-retest reliability were used in this study to measure the
stability and reliability of the scale. Generally speaking, the
scale with the reliability coefficient between .7 and 1.0 is rec-
ognized to be acceptable (Gliner, Morgan, & Harmon, 2001).
However, some scholars propose stricter standard that the scale
with reliability coefficient over .8 is only accepted. In this study,
homogeneity reliability test results revealed that Cronbach Al-
pha coefficient of each subscale and factor was between .882
and .972, which showed that the scale had relatively high ho-
In order to test the time stability of the scale, 52 subjects
were retested 6 weeks after the first test. Some scholars argue
that in order to test test-retest reliability coefficient of single
item, the coefficient is generally over .50 (Gustavsson, Bergan,
Edman, Ekselius, Knorring, & Linder, 2000). The test-retest
correlation coefficient of the scale showed that test-retest reli-
ability coefficient and test-retest reliability of each subscale and
each factor were higher than .50 respectively, which was founded
to be significantly correlated and revealed the scale had rela-
tively good time stability.
Validity refers to the degree to which a scale truly tests the
properties. There are various methods to verify the validity
(Gotay, Blaine, Haynes, Holup, & Pagano, 2002). Three basic
validity forms were selected in this study: content validity,
construct validity and confirmatory factor analysis. The content
validity was measured based on the correlation coefficient be-
tween the core of each factor and the total score of the scale.
Medium to high correlation coefficient between each subscale
and each factor in this study was obtained to reach the signifi-
cant level, which revealed that the content of each factor was
consistent with the content of the questionnaire and the ques-
tionnaire had good content validity.
Construct validity refers to the degree of which a scale tests
certain psychological structure or characteristics from the per-
spective of theory (Clark & Watson, 1995). Correlation coeffi-
cient among factors and discriminant validity were to test the
construct validity of the questionnaire.
Correlation coefficient between the score of each subscale
and the total score exceeding that between subscales is a
method in construct validity test in psychometrics (Huang,
2002). The study firstly investigated the internal consistency of
test structure and correlation matrix between each factor and
each subscale. According to the result, Pearson correlated cor-
relations of subjects’ score in each subscale and each factor
were founded to be significantly related.
Confirmatory factor analysis was to confirm the theoretical
model of the scale. Parenting Style and Dimensions Question-
naire (PSDQ) was approved to have mature theory frame in
foreign countries, therefore, this study was only to demonstrate
whether the theoretical framework was also suitable for China’s
national conditions and cultural background and confirmatory
factor analysis was analyzed to obtain the evaluation of each fit
index of fitting research mode (Hu & Bentler, 1998; Guo,
Wang, Chen, & Han, 2007; Sivo, Fan, Witta, & Willse, 2006).
Both Chi-square of goodness of fit test (CMIN) and degree
of freedom (DF) are used to illustrate the correctness level of
model, close to 2 to be acceptable. The ratios of each subscale
of PSDQ are between 2.218 and 3.745. Tucker-Lewis Index
(TLI): theoretically, the closer to 1, the better the goodness of
fit is, and the value over .8 illustrates the goodness of fit is ac-
Copyright © 2013 SciRes. 539
ceptable. TLIs of each subscale of PSDQ are between .808
and .920. Root mean square error of approximation (RMSEA)
is used to evaluate the degree of non goodness of fit of the scale,
close to 0 showing good goodness of fit, RMSEA .08 show-
ing reasonable goodness of fit. RMSEAs of each subscale of
PSDQ are between .052 - .079. Generally, proliferation indexes
(CFI: comparative fit index, NFI: non-normed fit index, IFI:
incremental fit index) over .8 are acceptable. The proliferation
indexs of over half of subscales of PSDQ are over .9, vast ma-
jority over .8.
The results of confirmatory factor analysis revealed Parent-
ing Style and Dimensions Questionnaire (PSDQ) had good
construct validity and was also suitable for China’s national
conditions and cultural background.
In conclusion, Chinese version of Parenting Style and Di-
mensions Questionnaire (PSDQ) has relatively good reliability
and validity and provides a relatively effective and reliable
psychometric instrument for the parents to understand parenting
style and dimensions and evaluate family education models.
The authors would like to show their thanks to Professor Li
Tao’s team of West China Hospital of Sichuan University.
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