The present study focuses on the development of an improved understanding of the factors which may mediate behavioral changes related to child restraint system usage. As part of this focus, overt behavioral change in response to the external environmental condition of a new usage law was examined. Both quantitative and qualitative methods were employed. The subject pool consisted of those parents who were observed at two points by researchers of the Tennessee Child Passenger Safety Program in the five largest urban areas and three small city areas in Tennessee. Parents who use child restraint systems with their children tended to perceive less cost to parents and less cost to children associated with usage than did nonusers. Users were more likely to be aware of the law than were nonusers. They also tended to indicate greater support for government regulation and greater support for adult restraint system use than did nonusers. Parents interviewed after the law took effect were more likely to be aware of it than parents interviewed before the law took effect. They also had more accurate knowledge of the law than did parents measured approximately three months before the law took effect. The potential impact of gender of parent and type of public information and education program received on parents' beliefs, knowledge, and attitudes was also considered. Although gender differences did not emerge, some differences between the two types of public information and education program received were found. Further investigation of the interrelationships of factors mediating the usage decision is advocated. A model for analyzing the usage decision is recommended as a basis for additional research. It consists of three broad categories called predisposing factors, enabling factors, and reinforcing factors. An improved understanding of these factors and their interrelationships will assist policymakers and program designers in increasing child restraint system usage.

  • Corporate Authors:

    University of Tennessee, Knoxville

    203 Administration Building
    Knoxville, TN  United States  37996-0700
  • Authors:
    • HUGHES, E
  • Publication Date: 1979-12

Media Info

  • Features: References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 138 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00308858
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: National Safety Council Safety Research Info Serv
  • Report/Paper Numbers: Dissertatn
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: May 21 1980 12:00AM