Document Type




Format of Original

13 p.

Publication Date



Oxford University Press

Source Publication

Journal of Pediatric Psychology

Source ISSN


Original Item ID

doi: 10.1093/jpepsy/jsq106


Objective: To examine reliability and validity data for the Family Interaction Macro-coding System (FIMS) with adolescents with spina bifida (SB), adolescents with type 1 diabetes mellitus (T1DM), and healthy adolescents and their families.

Methods: Sixty-eight families of children with SB, 58 families of adolescents with T1DM, and 68 families in a healthy comparison group completed family interaction tasks and self-report questionnaires. Trained coders rated family interactions using the FIMS.

Results: Acceptable interrater and scale reliabilities were obtained for FIMS items and subscales. Observed FIMS parental acceptance, parental behavioral control, parental psychological control, family cohesion, and family conflict scores demonstrated convergent validity with conceptually similar self-report measures.

Conclusions: Preliminary evidence supports the use of the FIMS with families of youths with SB and T1DM and healthy youths. Future research on overall family functioning may be enhanced by use of the FIMS.


Accepted version. Journal of Pediatric Psychology, Vol. 36, No. 5 (2011): 539-551. DOI. © 2011 Oxford University Press. Used with permission.

This is a pre-copy-editing, author-produced PDF of an article accepted for publication in Journal of Pediatric Psychology following peer review. The definitive publisher-authenticated version, "Use of an Observational Coding System with Families of Adolescents: Psychometric Properties among Pediatric and Healthy Populations", Journal of Pediatric Psychology (2010), p. 1-13, is available online at:

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