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  • Publicado : 4 de septiembre de 2012
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Héctor Ayala Velázquez*, Francisco Pedroza Cabrera*, Silvia Morales Chainé*,
Alicia Chaparro Caso-López*, Noemí Barragán Torres*

Aggressive behavior in childhood has become a socially relevant
problem demanding special attention from researchers, as asharp
increase has been reported in the aggressive and antisocial
behavior of children and adolescents. Especially disturbing is
the high participation of underage individuals in crimes such as
robbery, drug trafficking and homicide, while numerous studies
have shown that aggressive behavior evolves into more severe
antisocial behaviors in adolescence and young adulthood.
Research studiesconducted on childhood aggressiveness has
shown that these behaviors tend to become habits across time,
and furthermore to progress into more complex and serious
behaviors such as delinquency. For example, a high correlation
has been reported between childhood aggressive behavior and
antisocial behavior in adolescence and early adulthood.
In an effort to prevent and stop the evolution ofchildhood
aggressive behavior, efforts have been made to identify and describe those factors associated with the emergence of these
behaviors in the developmental stages that comprise childhood
and adolescence. Some researchers have coined terms such as
risk and protective factors, reporting that it is highly probable
that an individual might develop problem behaviors as the number
of risk factorsincreases and exceeds the number of protective
It has been suggested that risk factors may be classified into four
large groups: 1) the child’s characteristics, 2) the parent’s
characteristics, 3) the contextual factors, and 4) the parent-child
interaction. In a similar fashion, the protective factors that seem
to ameliorate the occurrence of antisocial behaviors are classifiedinto 5 main types: 1) parent-child support relations, 2) positive
disciplinary styles, 3) monitoring and supervisory skills, 4) childcentered families, and 5) parents seeking information and support.
Based on the identification of risk and protective factors
associated to antisocial behavior in children, other indicators that
explain the progression and generalization of these behaviors
acrosssettings have been reported though they are less reliable.
In particular, it has been reported that aggressive behavior
develops within the family unit, however, it has been also reported
that as the child comes into contact with other settings and agents,
his aggressive behavior generalizes.

The generalization of aggressive behaviors in other settings
seems appears to be the antecedent ofits progression to
antisocial behavior through developmental stages ending
in adulthood. It has been reported that before this behavior
progresses toward a more severe type, antisocial behavior
generalizes across settings and agents. Furthermore, lack
of control of the new agents promotes the increase and
maintenance of antisocial behavior.
Based on the results of numerous studiesconducted in other
countries that have identified and described those factors
associated to aggressiveness in children, and the relative absence
of longitudinal research studies in Mexico that might shed reliable
information on this topic, it is necessary to conduct research for
identifying the existing relationships between those factors
described in the bibliography and the development, evolutionand maintenance of antisocial behavior in Mexican children.
With these considerations in mind, the purpose of the present
study is to identify and describe those factors that are associated
with the occurrence and maintenance of aggressive behaviors in
a sample of school Mexican children, as well as to attempt to
describe the process of generalization of these behaviors to other
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