Interaction Style, Problem‐solving Behavior, and Family Problem‐solving Effectiveness

Martha A. Rueter, Rand D. Conger

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations


We proposed that an individual's characteristic style of interaction will predict his or her problem‐solving behavior and family problem‐solving effectiveness. We test this hypothesis for mothers, fathers, and adolescent boys and girls (M age = 12.7 years) in 431 rural families using both warm and hostile interaction styles. One set of videotape coders observed a general family discussion and measured interaction style. A year later, another, independent set of coders observed a family problem‐solving task. Family members reported family problem‐solving effectiveness immediately following the problem‐solving task. The results indicated that a hostile interaction style directly predicted destructive problem‐solving behavior and indirectly predicted family problem‐solving effectiveness. A warm interaction style related directly to constructive problem‐solving behavior and indirectly to family problem‐solving effectiveness.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)98-115
Number of pages18
JournalChild development
Issue number1
StatePublished - Feb 1995


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