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Neural synchrony in mother-child conversation: Exploring the role of conversation patterns

Nguyen, T and Schleihauf, H and Kayhan, E and Matthes, D and Vrtička, P and Hoehl, S (2021) 'Neural synchrony in mother-child conversation: Exploring the role of conversation patterns.' Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 16 (1-2). 93 - 102. ISSN 1749-5016

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Conversations are an essential form of communication in daily family life. Specific patterns of caregiver-child conversations have been linked to children's socio-cognitive development and child-relationship quality beyond the immediate family environment. Recently, interpersonal neural synchronization has been proposed as a neural mechanism supporting conversation. Here, we present a functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) hyperscanning study looking at the temporal dynamics of neural synchrony during mother-child conversation. Preschoolers (20 boys and 20 girls, M age 5;07 years) and their mothers (M age 36.37 years) were tested simultaneously with fNIRS hyperscanning while engaging in a free verbal conversation lasting for 4 min. Neural synchrony (using wavelet transform coherence analysis) was assessed over time. Furthermore, each conversational turn was coded for conversation patterns comprising turn-taking, relevance, contingency and intrusiveness. Results from linear mixed-effects modeling revealed that turn-taking, but not relevance, contingency or intrusiveness predicted neural synchronization during the conversation over time. Results are discussed to point out possible variables affecting parent-child conversation quality and the potential functional role of interpersonal neural synchronization for parent-child conversation.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health > Psychology, Department of
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 15 Jul 2020 14:49
Last Modified: 13 Jun 2021 13:15

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