The study of cultural differences regarding parental cognitions in infancy is important in order to support inclusive and participatory practices and to fight social inequalities and educational poverty, since an increasingly number of immigrant families attends child care services. The aim of the study is to compare knowledge and beliefs on children development and education in a sample of Italian and immigrant parents. Method. The study included 124 mothers (52.4% Italian and 47.6% immigrant) and 108 fathers (65.7% Italian and 34.3% immigrant), with children attending child care services. Mothers and fathers filled a questionnaire about socio-anagraphic characteristics, parental knowledge of child development and sources of knowledge, socialization goals and parental ethnotheories. Results. Levels of knowledge about child development and information sources differ between Italian and immigrant parents: Italian parents have better knowledge and use formal sources more. These results are influenced not only by culture, but also by educational degree and parental gender. Autonomous Socialization Goals and Autonomous Parenting Ethnotheories are considered important by both subgroups, while Relational Socialization Goals and Relational Parenting Ethnotheories are more highlighted by immigrant parents. Conclusions. Similarities and differences between Italian and immigrant parents underline the importance of making clear and sharing educational and developmental goals with different cultural significance.
Keywords: Immigration, infancy, parental cognitions, socialization goals, parental ethnotheories, KIDI.
Laura Elvira Prino, Donatella Scarzello, Protima Agostini, Angelica Arace, Immigration and parenting: Parental cognitions in infancy in "RICERCHE DI PSICOLOGIA " 1/2020, pp. 159-190, DOI:10.3280/RIP2020-001008