Mahurin Honors College Capstone Experience/Thesis Projects


Psychological Sciences

Document Type



Self-regulation predicts school readiness and consists of “cool” and “hot” self regulation. “Cool” self-regulation is characterized by inhibition of a dominant response, working memory, and set shifting. “Hot” self-regulation involves inhibition, shifting attention, and regulation of emotion in arousing situations. In this study, self-regulation was measured in 80 preschool-age children (3-5 years). Two “cool” tasks (Pencil Tap and Day/Night) were coded for percent correct, and the other two “cool” tasks (Dimensional Change Card Sort and Head-Toes-Knees-Shoulders) were coded for total score. The “hot” task (Snack Delay) was coded for compliance to task demands (no touching of snack/materials until timer beeped while keeping hands flat). As seen for all tasks, the 4 year-old participants demonstrated better scores than the 3-year-old participants. For Snack Delay, 4-year-olds demonstrated a slightly longer wait with their hands flat than 3 year-old participants, in general. Also, for snack delay, both age groups demonstrated very poor success rates for all 10 trials. Pencil Tap and Head-Toes-Knees-Shoulders showed significant age effects, demonstrating that 4-year-old children showed significantly better performance than 3-year-old children. Dimensional Change Card Sort, Day/Night, and Snack Delay yielded no significant age effects. No effects of gender were found.

Advisor(s) or Committee Chair

Dr. Elizabeth Lemerise, Dr. Diane Lickenbrock, Dr. Lisa Duffin


Development Studies | Psychiatry and Psychology | Social and Behavioral Sciences