The Mediating Effects of Aggression in the Relationship between Marital Conflict and School Adjustment for Adolescents

부부갈등이 청소년의 학교생활적응에 미치는 영향에서 공격성의 매개효과

  • Lee, Hyong-Sil (Department of Early Childhood Education, Chung-Ang University)
  • 이형실 (중앙대학교 유아교육과)
  • Received : 2020.02.18
  • Accepted : 2020.03.27
  • Published : 2020.03.31


This study examined the mediating effects of aggression in the associations between marital conflict and school adjustment for adolescents. Participants were 482 middle school students of Seoul. Statistical methods of correlational analysis and regression analysis were used with SPSS WIN 25.0. The results of this study showed that marital conflict had positive influences on aggression of adolescents. School adjustment was negatively affected by aggression of adolescents. Marital conflict was found to have negative direct effects on school adjustment for adolescents. The results from regression analysis indicated that aggression mediated the relationship between marital conflict and school adjustment for adolescents.


  1. Ahn, J. Y., Son, Y. E., & Nam, S. I. (2014). The effects of abuse and neglect from parents on children's school adjustment: Mediating effect of aggression. Korean Journal of Youth Studies, 21(12), 261-284.
  2. Baron, R. M., & Kenny, D. A. (1986). The moderator-mediator variable distinction in social psychological research: Conceptual, strategic, and statistical considerations. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 51, 1173-1182.
  3. Bascoe, S. M., Davies, P. T., Sturge-Apple, M. L., & Cummings, E. M. (2009). Children's representations of family relationships, peer information processing, and school adjustment. Developmental Psychology, 45(6), 1740.
  4. Bierman, K. L. (1994). School adjustment. In R. J. Corsini (Ed.), Encyclopedia of psychology. New York: John Wiley & Sons.
  5. Brook, J. S., & Newcomb, M. D. (1995). Childhood aggression and unconventionality: Impact on later academic achievement, drug use, and workforce involvement. The Journal of Genetic Psychology, 156(4), 393-410.
  6. Bryant, A. L., Schulenberg, J. E., O'Malley, P. M., Bachman, J. G., & Johnston, L. D. (2003). How academic achievement, attitudes, and behaviors relate to the course of substance use during adolescence: A 6-year, multiwave national longitudinal study. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 13(3), 361-397.
  7. Buehler, C., Lange, G., & Franck, K. L. (2007). Adolescents' cognitive and emotional responses to marital hostility. Child Development, 78(3), 775-789.
  8. Call, K. T., & Mortimer, J. T. (2001). Arenas of comfort in adolescence: A study of adjustment in context. Manwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  9. Campbell, S. B., Spieker, S., Burchinal, M., Poe, M. D., & The NICHD Early Child Care Research Network. (2006). Trajectories of aggression from toddlerhood to age 9 predict academic and social functioning through age 12. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 47(8), 791-800.
  10. Cassidy, J., Kirsh, S. J., Scolton, K. L., & Parke, R. D. (1996). Attachment and representations of peer relationships. Developmental Psychology, 32(5), 892-904.
  11. Cho, J. H. (2009). The effects of adolescents'perceived parental conflict on an their adjustment in school life. Unpublished master's thesis, Sogang University, Seoul.
  12. Cummings, E. M., Zahn-Waxler, C., & Radke-Yarrow, M. (1981). Young children's responses to expressions of anger and affection by others in the family. Child Development, 52(4), 1274-1282.
  13. Cummings, E. M., Goeke-Morey, M. C., & Papp, L. M. (2004). Everyday marital conflict and child aggression. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 32(2), 191-202.
  14. Davies, P. T., & Cummings, E. M. (1994). Marital conflict and child adjustment: an emotional security hypothesis. Psychological Bulletin, 116, 387-411.
  15. Davies, P. T., Winter, M. A., & Cicchetti, D. (2006). The implications of emotional security theory for understanding and treating childhood psychopathology. Development and Psychopathology, 18(3), 707-735.
  16. Davies, P. T., Woitach, M. J., Winter, M. A., & Cummings, E. M. (2008). Children's insecure representations of the interparental relationship and their school adjustment: The mediating role of attention difficulties. Child Development, 79(5), 1570-1582.
  17. Dodge, K. A. (2000). Conduct disorder. In A. J. Sameroff, M. Lewis, & S. M. Miller (Eds.), Handbook of developmental psychopathology (pp. 447-463). Springer: Boston, MA.
  18. Dodge, K. A., & Coie, J. D. (1987). Social-information-processing factors in reactive and proactive aggression in children's peer groups. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 53(6), 1146-1158.
  19. DuBois, D. L., Eitel, S. K., & Felner, R. D. (1994). Effects of family environment and parent-child relationships on school adjustment during the transition to early adolescence. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 56(2), 405-414.
  20. Fergusson, D. M., & Horwood, L. J. (1998). Early conduct problems and later life opportunities. The Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry and Allied Disciplines, 39(8), 1097-1108.
  21. Gerard, J. M., Krishnakumar, A., & Buehler, C. (2006). Marital conflict, parent-child relations, and youth maladjustment: A longitudinal investigation of spillover effects. Journal of Family Issues, 27(7), 951-975.
  22. Graham, S., Bellmore, A. D., & Mize, J. (2006). Peer victimization, aggression, and their co-occurrence in middle school: Pathways to adjustment problems. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 34(3), 349-364.
  23. Grych, J. H., & Fincham, F. D. (1990). Marital conflict and children's adjustment: A cognitive-contextual framework. Psychological Bulletin, 108(2), 267-290.
  24. Jouriles, E. N., Murphy, C. M., & O'Leary, K. D. (1989). Interspousal aggression, marital discord, and child problems. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 57(3), 453-455.
  25. Jang, S. J., & Yang, H. W. (2007). Structural equation modeling about parents-child relationship, children's depression, aggression, and school adjustment. Studies on Korean Youth, 46, 5-29.
  26. Jung, E. H. (2004). Relationships of marital conflict perceived by children, children's aggression, and bullies/victims of peer victimization. Unpublished master's thesis, The Catholic University of Korea-Songsim, Bucheon, Gyeonggi.
  27. Jung, M. J. (2005). Marital conflicts between parents, adolescent's self-esteem and school maladjustment. Unpublished master's thesis, The Catholic University of Korea-Songsim, Bucheon, Gyeonggi.
  28. Kim, H. R., & Choi, S. H. (2009). The effects of family strengths and school-related factors on adolescents' school adjustment. Journal of the Korean Society of Child Welfare, 30, 159-182.
  29. Kim, J. H., & Lee, S. Y. (2017). The mediating effects of adolescents' aggressive behaviors on the relationship between perceived parents' marital conflict and school adjustment. Korean Journal of Play Therapy, 20(3), 181-199.
  30. Kim, S. Y., & Chun, J. S. (2015). The effects of self-efficacy on adolescents' school adjustment: The mediating effects of depression and aggression. Korean Journal of Child Studies, 36(4), 193-208.
  31. Kim, Y. R. (1993). An analysis on the influences of contribution variables toward academic achievement. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Dongkuk University, Seoul.
  32. Kwon, Y. S., & Jang, S. H. (2019). The influences of student's dysfunctional family structure, social support, and career thoughts on their school life adjustment in middle schools. Counseling Psychology Education Welfare, 6(1), 61-73.
  33. Kokko, K., Tremblay, R. E., Lacourse, E., Nagin, D. S., & Vitaro, F. (2006). Trajectories of prosocial behavior and physical aggression in middle childhood: Links to adolescent school dropout and physical violence. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 16(3), 403-428.
  34. Kupersmidt, J. B., & Coie, J. D. (1990). Preadolescent peer status, aggression, and school adjustment as predictors of externalizing problems in adolescence. Child Development, 61(5), 1350-1362.
  35. Ladd, G. W., & Burgess, K. B. (1999). Charting the relationship trajectories of aggressive, withdrawn, and aggressive/withdrawn children during early grade school. Child Development, 70(4), 910-929.
  36. Loveland, J. M., Lounsbury, J. W., Welsh, D., & Buboltz, W. C. (2007). The validity of physical aggression in predicting adolescent academic performance. British Journal of Educational Psychology, 77(1), 167-176.
  37. Marcus, N. E., Lindahl, K. M., & Malik, N. M. (2001). Interparental conflict, children's social cognitions, and child aggression: A test of a mediational model. Journal of Family Psychology, 15(2), 315-333.
  38. McCoy, K. P., George, M. R., Cummings, E. M., & Davies, P. T. (2013). Constructive and destructive marital conflict, parenting, and children's school and social adjustment. Social Development, 22(4), 641-662.
  39. Noh, C. Y. (1988). The effects of the family violence on children's aggression. Unpublished master's thesis, Ewha Women's University, Seoul.
  40. Oh, J. A., Kim, E. K., & Yoon, H. M. (2018). Conflict and teacher behavior on adolescents' psychological adaptation and bully/victim status. Journal of School Social Work, 41, 221-246.
  41. Repetti, R. L., Robles, T. F., & Reynolds, B. (2011). Allostatic processes in the family. Development and Psychopathology, 23(3), 921-938.
  42. Rigby, K., & Slee, P. T. (1991). Bullying among Australian school children: Reported behavior and attitudes toward victims. The Journal of Social Psychology, 131(5), 615-627.
  43. Seo, C. R. (2005). The effects of family environment and individual psychological variables on adolescents' problem behaviors. Unpublished master's thesis, Chung-Ang University, Seoul.
  44. Seo, S. K., & Kwon, S. M. (2002). Validation study of the Korean version of the Aggression Questionnaire. Korean Journal of Clinical Psychology, 21(2), 487-501.
  45. Spielberger, C. D. (1979). Understanding stress and anxiety. New York: Harper & Row.
  46. Stocker, C. M., & Youngblade, L. (1999). Marital conflict and parental hostility: Links with children's sibling and peer relationships. Journal of Family Psychology, 13(4), 598-609.
  47. Stover, C. S., Zhou, Y., Kiselica, A., Leve, L. D., Neiderhiser, J. M., Shaw, D. S., & Reiss, D. (2016). Marital hostility, hostile parenting, and child aggression: Associations from toddlerhood to school age. Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 55(3), 235-242.
  48. Sturge-Apple, M. L., Davies, P. T., Winter, M. A., Cummings, E. M., & Schermerhorn, A. (2008). Interparental conflict and children's school adjustment: The explanatory role of children's internal representations of interparental and parent-child relationships. Developmental Psychology, 44(6), 1678-1690.
  49. Schwartz, D., Dodge, K. A., Pettit, G. S., & Bates, J. E. (1997). The early socialization of aggressive victims of bullying. Child Development, 68(4), 665-675.
  50. Tremblay, R. E. (2000). The development of aggressive behaviour during childhood: What have we learned in the past century? International Journal of Behavioral Development, 24(2), 129-141.
  51. Turner, H. A., & Kopiec, K. (2006). Exposure to interparental conflict and psychological disorder among young adults. Journal of Family Issues, 27(2), 131-158.
  52. You, G. J. (2018). Impact of parental emotional abuse on adolescents' school adaptation: Focusing on the mediating effects of aggression and community consciousness. The Journal of Humanities and Social Science, 9(4), 1207-1220.
  53. Zimet, D. M., & Jacob, T. (2001). Influences of marital conflict on child adjustment: Review of theory and research. Clinical Child and Family Psychology Review, 4(4), 319-335.