Quality of Caregiver-Child Interaction for Infants and Toddlers (Q-CCIIT): A Review of the Literature

Publication Date: August 15, 2011


This literature review is one of several components of the Measurement Development: Quality of Caregiver-Child Interaction for Infants and Toddlers (Q-CCIIT) project, funded by the Office of Head Start (OHS) within the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), and with involvement of staff from the Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation (OPRE/ACF/DHHS). The main purpose of the Q-CCIIT project is to develop a new measure to assess the quality of caregiver-child interactions within varied nonparental care settings for infants and toddlers. Specifically, the new quality measure will be appropriate for use in center-based and family child care settings, as well as in single-and mixed-age classrooms. Furthermore, the measure should be appropriate for use with diverse populations, such as children with disabilities and children whose home language is not English.

There were several motivations for the Q-CCIIT project, including the 2007 Head Start legislation requiring Head Start and Early Head Start programs to use “scientifically based measures” that support classroom instructional practices and program evaluation. The selected measures should be “high-quality research-based measures that have been demonstrated to assist with the purposes for which they were devised, … developmentally, linguistically, and culturally appropriate for the population served, … [as well as] valid and reliable.” Another related motivation was the apparent paucity of extant quality measures that have strong psychometric properties and that focus on the particular aspects of quality within caregiver-child interactions that uniquely support the development of infants and toddlers.


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