Date of Award

Spring 2018

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Counseling & Human Services

Committee Director

Jude Austin

Committee Member

Anthony Perez

Committee Member

Emily Goodman-Scott

Committee Member

Andrew P. Daire


The primary goal of this study is to add to the validation and psychometric development of the Family Adjustment Measure (FAM; Daire, Dominguez, Carlson, & Case Pease, 2014). The FAM is a treatment-planning tool to assist members of the helping profession assess four different areas in parental and family adjustment for parents of children with disabilities (i.e., parental distress, family-based support, social support, and positive coping skills). Previously, the FAM was normed on predominantly middle- to upper-class, Caucasian females. However, lower-income, ethnic minority families experience systemic prejudice and other contextual and social barriers in their experiences of raising a child with disabilities that may not accurately be reflected in the original FAM model. Therefore, this study will utilize an archival data set from a federally-funded research grant, Project TOGETHER (To Offer Great Education That Harvests Enduring Relationships), to conduct a multilevel factor analysis on the FAM with a more diverse sample of parents of children with disabilities. Results of this study provided a new 16-item Family Adjustment Measure for Diverse Families (FAM-DF) that better reflected the experience of individual parents of children with disabilities, while accounting for couple influence on factor scores.