Notre Dame Babies and Families

This longitudinal study of the development of emotion regulation from infancy to toddlerhood began in 2001. Four major goals guided this study: 1) to examine the correlates and predictors of affect regulation from infancy to toddlerhood; 2) to examine the degree to which emotion regulatory patterns during early infancy are predictive of infant-parenting attachment and to what extent such relations are mediated or moderated by parent sensitivity; 3) to examine the extent to which emotion regulatory patterns and attachments during infancy predict later styles of emotion regulation and social competence during toddlerhood; and 4) to compare processes occurring for infant-mother dyads versus infant-father dyads.

Research Overview

In this study, 135 families (infants, mothers, and fathers) participated in six laboratory visits when infants were 3-,5-,7-,12-14-, and 20-months of age.  The first three visits centered on infants' affective and regulatory responses during the Still-Face Paradigm (Tronich et al.,1978), as well as mothers' and fathers' sensitivity in responding to their infants' emotionality.  Attachment data (Strange Situation; Ainsworth et al., 1978) was collected at the 12-month (infant-mother) and 14-month (infant-father) visit.  Finally, measures of children's social competence during several laboratory paradigms as well as mothers' and fathers' control tactics were assessed at the 20-month visit. Questionnaire data at appropriate ages were also obtained from mothers and fathers to assess parents' perception of their child's temperament, language development, parental involvement, and marital conflict.

Funded By

National Institute of Health (NIH)

Age Group

  • Adults
  • Infants
  • Toddlers


  • Julie Braungart-Rieker, Ph.D. (PI)

Research Impact


  • Braungart-Rieker, J.M., Planalp, E.M., Ekas, N.V., Lickenbrock, D.L., Zentall, S. (in press). Toddler Affect with Mothers and Fathers: The Importance of Infant Attachment. Attachment and Human Development. 
  • Planalp, E.M., O’Neill, M., & Braungart-Rieker, J.M. (2019). Parent Mind-Mindedness, Sensitivity, and Infant Affect: Implications for Attachment with Mothers and Fathers. Infant Behavior & Development, 57, 1-13.
  • Planalp, E.M., Du, H., Braungart-Rieker, J.M., & Wang, L. (2017). Growth Curve Modeling to Studying Change: A Comparison of Approaches Using Longitudinal Dyadic Data with Distinguishable Dyads. Structural Equation Modeling, 24, 129 – 147.
  • Planalp, E. M., & Braungart-Rieker, J. M. (2015). Trajectories of regulatory behaviors in early infancy: Determinants of self-distraction and self-comforting. Infancy, 20(2), pp. 129-159.
  • Lickenbrock, D.M. & Braungart-Rieker, J.M. (2015). Examining antecedents of Infant Attachment Security with Mothers and Fathers: An Ecological System Perspective. Infant Behavior and Development39, 173-187. 
  • Braungart-Rieker, J.M., Zentall, S., Lickenbrock, D., Ekas, N., Oshio, T., & Planalp, E. (2014). Attachment in the Making: Mother and Father Sensitivity and Infants’ Responses During the Still-Face Paradigm, Journal of Experimental Child Psychology125, 63-84. 
  • Lickenbrock, D.M., Braungart-Rieker, J.M., Ekas, N., Zentall, S., Oshio, T., & Planalp, E.M.  (2013). Early Temperament and Attachment Security with Mothers and Fathers as Predictors of Toddler Compliance. Infant and Child Development, 22, 580-602.
  •  Planalp, E.M., Braungart-Rieker, J.M. (2013). Temperamental precursors of infant attachment with mothers and fathers. Infant Behavior and Development, 36, 686-808. 
  • Planalp, E.M., Braungart-Rieker, J.M., Lickenbrock, D.M., Zentall, S. (2013).  Trajectories of Parenting During Infancy: The Role of Infant Temperament and Marital Adjustment for Mothers and Fathers. Infancy, 18(S1), E16-E45. 
  • Ekas, N.V., Lickenbrock, D.M., & Braungart-Rieker, J.M. (2013). Developmental trajectories of emotion regulation across infancy: Do age and the social partner influence temporal patterns? Infancy, 18, 1-26.
  • Zentall, S.R., Braungart-Rieker, J.M., Ekas, N., & Lickenbrock, D.M. (2012). Longitudinal Assessment of Sleep-Wake Regulation and Attachment Security with Parents. Infant and Child Development, 21, 443-457. 
  • Ekas, N.V., Braungart-Rieker, J.M., Lickenbrock, D.M., & Zentall, S.R., Maxwell, S.E. (2011). Toddler Emotion Regulation with Mothers and Fathers: Temporal Associations between Affect and Behavioral Strategies, Infancy16, 266-294.







Research Themes