Discipline methods used by mothers: The contribution of ethnicity, socioeconomic status, and child's characteristics

Mona Khoury-Kassabri*, Murray A. Straus

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


To describe and compare the prevalence of discipline methods used by Arab and Jewish mothers of 6-9 year old children in Israel. 234 mothers completed the Dimensions of Discipline Inventory to describe the methods they use to correct their children's misbehavior. Non-punitive discipline, such as giving rewards, was more prevalent than punitive discipline, such as psychological aggression and corporal punishment. However, the use of punitive methods was not negligible. Some cultural and socioeconomic status (SES) interactions were found. Ethnicity and mother's educational level were two important factors that explain discipline methods used by mothers. Mothers with low education, especially in the Arab group, used inconsistent parenting styles to correct their children's misbehavior. This could be a result of the many social stressors that face these families in their daily life. It could also be the result of differences between parents in the knowledge and parenting skills that enable them to deal effectively with children's misbehavior. More allocation of resources, support and supervision is indicated for these families.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)45-57
Number of pages13
JournalChild Indicators Research
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2011


  • Culture
  • Dimensions of Discipline Inventory (DDI)
  • Education
  • Mothers


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