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Penn Child Research Center

The Family Involvement Questionnaire (FIQ)

The Family Involvement Questionnaire (FIQ) is a multi-dimensional scale of family involvement in early childhood education. The FIQ uses parent or primary caregiver reports to assess family involvement for children in preschool, kindergarten, and 1st grade programs. The FIQ is informed by the empirical parent involvement literature. It reflects various levels of parent activity across home, classroom, and school contexts.  


The National Education Goals Panel (U.S. Department of Education, 2000) identified parental participation in children’s education as one of its eight goals for improving the nation’s educational system. A developmental-systems perspective underscores the importance of parent involvement as a means of promoting educational outcomes for young children. Researchers have called for measures that operationalize relevant dimensions of parent involvement to investigate the manifold ways that parents support their children’s education. The Family Involvement Questionnaire was developed in response to these needs, and serves to assess parent participation and the multiple domains of parent activities in children’s education.

There are three dimensions of the FIQ:

  • Home-Based Involvement. This dimension includes behaviors describing the active promotion of a learning environment at home for children, such as providing a place in the home for learning materials and creating learning experiences for children in the community.
  • School-Based Involvement. This dimension is defined by activities and behaviors parents engage in at school with their children, such as volunteering in the classroom, going on class trips, and meeting with other parents in or out of school to plan events or fundraisers.
  • Home-School Conferencing. This dimension describes communication between parents and school personnel about a child’s educational experience and progress, including talking with the teacher about a child’s difficulties or accomplishments at school and educational activities to practice at home. 


Use, Qualifications, and Limitations

The FIQ was developed for use with parents or primary caregivers of children in preschool, kindergarten, and 1st grade programs. It is to be used for research purposes only and should not be used for diagnostic or other testing purposes. This measure was developed and validated using a target population of children in a large urban school district, which serves a large percentage of low-income, minority children. Use of these norms with a very different population is not recommended, in keeping with national standards for educational and psychological testing (Standard 12.3, AERA, APA, & NCME, 1999).