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Psychologists seek families to study sibling relationships

* 28 April 2003 *

Psychologists seek families to study sibling relationships

Psychologists at the University of Sussex are seeking local families to take part in a study into sibling relationships.

The Sisters and Brothers Study (SiBS) is being conducted by psychologists Dr Alison Pike and Dr Anna Harrison, who have been talking to children and their parents since January 2002, aided by their puppets Ziggy and Iggy.

"Our aim is to see 200 families and we've seen about 80 so far," says Dr Pike. "We would like to talk to parents whose children attend schools in the Brighton and Hove area who have a child in Reception or Year 1 and also another child up to the age of eight."

The study involves talking to the parents (or parent) about the children, asking what they are like, how they behave in different situations, what sorts of activities they enjoy, and how well the two children get along together. The children get to meet Iggy and Ziggy, and to play with a fun selection of toys.

Each child receives a £5 book token and T-shirt, and the parents are given a videotape of their children playing the games. Nobody outside the project team will see any of the information and no child or parent is identified by name.

"We would love to hear from any parents who would like to find out more about the study, and we are particularly keen to invite more single mothers to take part," says Dr Pike.

The Sisters and Brothers Study is funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation.

* Notes for editors *

Dr Alison Pike can be contacted on 01273 877288, email
Dr Anna Harrison can be contacted on 01273 678408, email

Press Office contacts: Peter Simmons or Jacqui Bealing, University of Sussex, Tel. 01273 678888, email or

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