Background: Accurate early assessment and targeted intervention with problematic parent/child feeding dynamics is critical for the prevention and treatment of child obesity. The division of responsibility in feeding (sDOR), articulated by the Satter Feeding Dynamics Model (fdSatter), has been demonstrated clinically as an effective approach to reduce child feeding problems, including those leading to obesity. Lack of a tested instrument to examine adherence to fdSatter stimulated initial construction of the Satter Feeding Dynamics Inventory (fdSI). The aim of this project was to refine the item pool to establish translational validity, making the fdSI suitable for advanced psychometric analysis.
Methods: Cognitive interviews (n = 80) with caregivers of varied socioeconomic strata informed revisions that demonstrated face and content validity. fdSI responses were mapped to interviews using an iterative, multi-phase thematic approach to provide an instrument ready for construct validation.
Results: fdSI development required five interview phases over 32 months: Foundational; Refinement; Transitional; Assurance; and Launching. Each phase was associated with item reduction and revision. Thirteen items were removed from the 38-item Foundational phase and seven were revised in the Refinement phase. Revisions, deletions, and additions prompted by Transitional and Assurance phase interviews resulted in the 15-item Launching phase fdSI. Only one Foundational phase item was carried through all development phases, emphasizing the need to test for item comprehension and interpretation before psychometric analyses.
Conclusions: Psychometric studies of item pools without encrypted meanings will facilitate progress toward a tool that accurately detects adherence to sDOR. Ability to measure sDOR will facilitate focus on feeding behaviors associated with reduced risk of childhood obesity.