Table 1

Description of study variables (omitting simple ‘Yes or No’ data items)

ConstructMeasurement itemsInterpretation
Mental health competence (outcome measure)Overall social competenceEg, plays and works cooperatively with other children
Responsibility and respectEg, demonstrates self-control
Approaches to learningEg, is able to solve problems by himself/herself
Readiness to explore new thingsEg, is eager to play a new game
Prosocial and helping behaviourEg, comforts another child who is upset
Child characteristicsGender0=female, 1=male
Family resourcesFamily hardshipYes to any of eight questions about financial difficulty eg, being unable to pay bills on time
Total yearly income before taxIncome before tax, superannuation or health insurance (including pensions and allowances)
Family stabilityFamily structureChild lives with both biological parents; child lives in reconstituted family; Other (single mother)
Co-parenting scaleThree items measuring frequency of supportive behaviour between parents; 1 (Never) to 5 (Always)
Hendrick relationship quality scoreSix items from the Relationship Assessment Scale;33 higher scores indicate higher relationship quality
Parent mental healthAny stressful life eventsYes to any of 12 items, eg, serious illness, injury or assault in the last 12 months
Maternal psychological distress scoreK6 psychological distress scale,34 reverse scored so that a higher score indicates a relative lack of psychological distress
History of postnatal depressionYes or no
Mother's parenting styleWarmthSix items examining the regularity of warm parenting behaviours, eg, expressing affection by hugging, kissing and holding child
Use of inductive reasoningThree questions examining reasoning with study child. Higher scores indicate more frequent use
Consistent parentingFive items, eg, ensuring completion of behaviour requests
AngerFive items, eg, feeling angry when punishing the child
Observed to praise childParent was observed praising child at least twice during the visit from researcher; Yes or No