Development of the responsiveness to child feeding cues scale

Appetite. 2013 Jun;65:210-9. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2013.02.010. Epub 2013 Feb 16.


Parent-child feeding interactions during the first 2 years of life are thought to shape child appetite and obesity risk, but remain poorly studied. This research was designed to develop and assess the Responsiveness to Child Feeding Cues Scale (RCFCS), an observational measure of caregiver responsiveness to child feeding cues relevant to obesity. General responsiveness during feeding as well as maternal responsiveness to child hunger and fullness were rated during mid-morning feeding occasions by three trained coders using digital-recordings. Initial inter-rater reliability and criterion validity were evaluated in a sample of 144 ethnically-diverse mothers of healthy 7- to 24-month-old children. Maternal self-report of demographics and measurements of maternal/child anthropometrics were obtained. Inter-rater agreement for most variables was excellent (ICC>0.80). Mothers tended to be more responsive to child hunger than fullness cues (p<0.001). Feeding responsiveness dimensions were associated with demographics, including maternal education, maternal body mass index, child age, and aspects of child feeding, including breastfeeding duration, and self-feeding. The RCFCS is a reliable observational measure of responsive feeding for children <2 years of age that is relevant to obesity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Appetite
  • Body Mass Index
  • Breast Feeding
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cues*
  • Eating
  • Educational Status
  • Feeding Behavior*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hunger*
  • Infant
  • Maternal Behavior*
  • Mother-Child Relations*
  • Mothers*
  • Obesity / etiology
  • Observation
  • Observer Variation
  • Perception
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Satiation*
  • Self Report