HUMAN DEVELOPMENT AND FAMILY STUDIES

School of Health and Human Sciences

The Maternal Responsiveness Scale (MRQ) was designed to assess how mothers respond to their infants, particularly when distressed, across a variety of situations.  To date, we have used the measure with mothers of 6-month-old and 1-year-old infants.  The measure yields 3 subscales: responsiveness  (25 items; e.g.,  “Mom busy, respond playfully if baby smiles or coos,” and “Mom busy, make point of interacting with baby every few minutes.”),  non-responsiveness (13 items; e.g., “Mom busy, let baby cry for a few minutes while finishing,” and “Baby afraid, let baby cry until stops crying on own.”), and delayed responsiveness (11 items; e.g., “Baby frustrated, let baby cry for a few seconds before responding” and “Baby night cry, let baby cry for a few minutes before responding”).

The non-responsiveness scale demonstrated the most consistent convergent validity with other parenting measures including observed sensitivity and predictive validity to child outcomes (Leerkes & Qu, 2017).  Thus, we have made the full version(doc) including all final subscales and a brief version including just the non-responsiveness(doc) scale available, along with scoring instructions(doc).

Validation paper:
Leerkes, E.M.  & Qu, J. & (2017).  The Maternal (Non) Responsiveness Questionnaire: A new self-report of parenting during infancy. Infant and Child Development, 26:e1992 DOI: 10.1002/icd.1992(pdf)