Helicopter parenting backfires, study shows

September 26, 2012, Brigham Young University

(Medical Xpress)—If your mom or dad has ever contacted one of your professors, intervened to settle a dispute with your roommates, or hunted for jobs on your behalf, they might be helicopter parents.

And new research by professors at Brigham Young University indicates that, despite their good intentions, helicopter parents' overprotective nature might be the reason their children sometimes skip class and turn in assignments late.

Professors Laura Padilla-Walker and Larry Nelson studied 438 students from four universities around the country (BYU was not in the sample). About one-fourth of the students reported that parents "make important decisions for me." And about one-third of the parents reported that they make for their children.

In their analysis of the data, Padilla-Walker and Nelson found that this seems to backfire in terms of school engagement. As they write in the October issue of the , this is about more than just homework.

"It would seem that emerging adults should be personally invested in their own growth and development by solving their own problems with , making their own decisions about employment, and seeking their own help from professors," write the study authors. "By not doing so, emerging adults may be robbing themselves of the experiences and practice necessary to develop skills that are essential for success in marriage, careers, and adult social interactions."

Explore further: Study shows how much parents pay for college

More information: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22503075

Related Stories

Study shows how much parents pay for college

April 17, 2012
While you’ve heard of the “mom and dad scholarship,” new research clears up some of the mystery about the number and scope of these grants given to today’s college students from their parents.

Fathers still matter to kids who have moved out

June 13, 2011
BYU family life professor Larry Nelson's oldest daughter Jessica graduated from high school this spring, so his career researching the transition to adulthood is starting to get personal.

Persistence is learned from fathers, study shows

June 15, 2012
When the going gets tough, the tough ought to thank their fathers.

Recommended for you

Intensive behavior therapy no better than conventional support in treating teenagers with antisocial behavior

January 19, 2018
Research led by UCL has found that intensive and costly multisystemic therapy is no better than conventional therapy in treating teenagers with moderate to severe antisocial behaviour.

Babies' babbling betters brains, language

January 18, 2018
Babies are adept at getting what they need - including an education. New research shows that babies organize mothers' verbal responses, which promotes more effective language instruction, and infant babbling is the key.

College branding makes beer more salient to underage students

January 18, 2018
In recent years, major beer companies have tried to capitalize on the salience of students' university affiliations, unveiling marketing campaigns and products—such as "fan cans," store displays, and billboard ads—that ...

Inherited IQ can increase in early childhood

January 18, 2018
When it comes to intelligence, environment and education matter – more than we think.

Modulating molecules: Study shows oxytocin helps the brain to modulate social signals

January 17, 2018
Between sights, sounds, smells and other senses, the brain is flooded with stimuli on a moment-to-moment basis. How can it sort through the flood of information to decide what is important and what can be relegated to the ...

Baby brains help infants figure it out before they try it out

January 17, 2018
Babies often amaze their parents when they seemingly learn new skills overnight—how to walk, for example. But their brains were probably prepping for those tasks long before their first steps occurred, according to researchers.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.