Seven Key Principles of Self-Regulation and Self-Regulation in Context

Publication Date: February 17, 2017


This brief highlights seven key principles that summarize a framework for understanding self-regulation development:

  1. Self-regulation serves as the foundation for lifelong functioning
  2. Self-regulation is the act of managing cognition and emotion
  3. A combination of individual and external factors influence self-regulation
  4. Teachers, providers, caregivers, and parents can teach and strengthen self-regulation
  5. Self-regulation is dependent on “co-regulation” provided by parents or other caregiving adults
  6. Prolonged or pronounced stress and adversity, including poverty and trauma experiences, can disrupt self-regulation
  7. Self-regulation develops over an extended period from birth through young adulthood

These seven principles come from the Self-Regulation and Toxic Stress: Foundations for Understanding Self-Regulation from an Applied Developmental Perspective report.

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