• Article

Validity and reliability of the Family Needs Survey - Japanese version

Background The Family Needs Survey (FNS), a tool assessing the needs of families with young children with disabilities, was developed in 1988. The present study evaluated the reliability and validity of the FNS – Japanese version. Method We conducted an anonymous survey on 6376 families of children with disabilities aged 0–15. Six months later, 97 subjects were asked to complete the survey a second time. We performed principal factor analysis. Internal consistency was estimated by Cronbach’s alpha. Test–retest reliability was calculated using by intraclass correlation coefficient. To assess the content validity, another survey of 130 specialists was conducted. Results The response rate was 23.4%. The subjects were parents of 797 children, comprising 374 mother–father pairs, 345 mothers only, and 78 fathers only. The average ages of mothers, fathers, and children were 39.8, 41.8, and 8.8 years old, respectively. Using the mothers’ data, four factors were extracted. Factor 1 labeled Informational Needs contained all items of “Informational Needs,” “Professional Support” and “Community Support and Services,” and one “Child Care” from the original version. Factor 2, Family and Social Support, and Factor 4, Explaining to Others, contained the same items as the original version. Factor 3, Financial Needs, contained the same items and two “Child Care” items. Factor analysis across children’s age groups produced almost the same results. Intraclass correlation coefficients were 0.67 for all mothers and 0.86 for all fathers. Cronbach’s alphas were comparatively high. More than 70% of specialists evaluated 33 items as reasonable to assess family needs.“Meeting with religious workers” was excluded because 87.0% of families definitely did not need help with this. Conclusions We verified the validity, and reliability of the FNS – Japanese version as an assessment tool with 34 items among 4 factors. It could be used for families with school-age children as well as young children.


Ueda, K., Bailey, D., Yonemoto, N., Kajikawa, K., Nishigami, Y., Narisawa, S., ... Kodama, K. (2013). Validity and reliability of the Family Needs Survey - Japanese version. Journal of Policy and Practice in Intellectual Disabilities, 10(2), 178-179.