Within the Wisconsin Twin Project's research on challenges
and adaptation, families with children between the ages
of six and eight are interviewed for the school age
assessment. The purpose of the school age assessment
is to learn more about twin similarities and differences
associated with emotional and behavioral adaptation
and challenges that occur during the first few years
of school. A wide range of approaches are used to learn
about twins and their families, including telephone
interviews, mailed questionnaires, and a home visit.
Parents should refer to the most current letter of informed
consent for complete details concerning research participation.
A brief summary is provided below.
Currently the project is in the data analysis phase. No families are being recruited at this time.
First, the twins' primary caregiver is interviewed
by telephone. All families with twins born in Wisconsin
are contacted about participation in this portion.
The interview includes questions about the twins'
physical similarities, health, and behavior.
Some families are asked to participate in additional
telephone interviews. Families participating in home
visits or other extensive follow-ups are interviewed
about (1) child behavior in everyday situations; (2)
the child's typical emotional reactions; (3) parenting
experiences; (4) general levels of family emotional
expressiveness, and (5) parents' own feelings. Some
questions consider twins' behavior more broadly, with
questions such as, "Is considerate of others' feelings."
Parents complete a packet of questionnaires about
child temperament, with questions such as "Is slow
to warm up to others." We also ask about parent personality
and life events.
The most extensive portion of the school age assessment
is a visit to the family's home to play a variety
of games and puzzles with the twins and conduct a
final interview with the primary caregiver. The home
visit includes a variety of typical every day activities
to capture the twins' typical emotional response while