Reconceptualizing Family Adaptation to Developmental Delay

Anita L. Pedersen, Keith Crnic, Bruce L. Baker, Jan Blacher

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


This study explores accurate conceptualization of the adaptation construct in families of children with developmental delay aged 3 to 8 years. Parents' self-reported measures of adaptation and observed dyadic relationship variables were examined. Confirmatory factor analysis and longitudinal growth modeling were used to evaluate the nature of adaptational processes. Results indicate that adaptational processes vary across adaptation index, child developmental level, and parent gender. Adaptation indices did not load onto a single construct at any time point. Several adaptational processes remained stable across time, although others showed linear or quadratic change. The findings of the current study indicate that it is time for a change in how adaptation is conceived for families of children with developmental delay.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)346-370
Number of pages25
JournalAmerican journal on intellectual and developmental disabilities
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2015


  • Adaptation
  • Child
  • Confirmatory factor analysis
  • Developmental delay
  • Developmental disability
  • Family
  • Longitudinal
  • Multigroup longitudinal growth curve analysis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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