Developmental assessment of competence from early childhood to middle adolescence

Jelena Obradović, Manfred H.M. van Dulmen, Tuppett M. Yates, Elizabeth A. Carlson, Byron Egeland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

54 Scopus citations


This study represents a developmentally informed, empirically validated examination of competence across multiple domains (Social, Cognitive, Emotional well-being), gender and age (early childhood, middle childhood, early adolescence, middle adolescence). Competence indicators were created and the structure of these domains was tested using multi-method, multi-informant data collected on 191 participants drawn from a prospective study of at-risk children. The results indicated that inter-individual differences in Cognitive and Social competence were stable across time, whereas inter-individual differences in Emotional well-being were stable only between early and middle adolescence. While the strength of stability of Cognitive competence was similar across different time points, the stability of Social competence declined after middle childhood, suggesting more inter-individual variability with regard to change. The findings also indicated that both the structure and the stability of competence are similar for boys and girls.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)857-889
Number of pages33
JournalJournal of Adolescence
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2006

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by a grant from the National Institute of Mental Health (MH40864-20) to the fifth author. Preparation of the manuscript was also supported by the Eva O. Miller Fellowship from the University of Minnesota to the first author and a National Science Foundation Fellowship to the third author.


  • Competence
  • Measurement
  • Positive adaptation
  • Stability


Dive into the research topics of 'Developmental assessment of competence from early childhood to middle adolescence'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this