Role-models, most often parents, are vital in the process of teaching children how to communicate and resolve conflicts. Children, specifically toddlers just learning to speak, may present unique disciplining challenges. This study examined the various methods of conflict management strategies parents use to try and change their toddler children’s behaviors. The main parental strategies studied include: verbal, imitative, physical, and no-action. Using a snowball sampling approach, 28 men and women participants were interviewed. The findings show that parents most often used verbal or imitative techniques to discipline their children. However an overwhelming majority agreed that verbal techniques do not work as well as imitative methods in encouraging the retention of desired behavior. Most parents agreed that their toddler did not comprehend the words but grasped the tone, thereby changing the child’s actions in the short-term but not retaining the behavioral suggestion on a long-term basis.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Behavior modification; Toddlers--Psychology

Publication Date


Document Type


Student Type


Degree Name

Communication and Media Technologies (MS)

Department, Program, or Center

School of Communication (CLA)


Andrea Hickerson

Advisor/Committee Member

Ammina Kothari

Advisor/Committee Member

Stephanie Godleski


Physical copy available from RIT's Wallace Library at LB1060.2 .S65 2017


RIT – Main Campus

Plan Codes