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Autism Research and Treatment
Volume 2015, Article ID 381236, 7 pages
Research Article

Parenting Behavior in Mothers of Preschool Children with ASD: Development of a Self-Report Questionnaire

1Parenting and Special Education Research Unit, University of Leuven (KU Leuven), Leopold Vanderkelenstraat 32, P.O. Box 3765, 3000 Leuven, Belgium
2Leuven Autism Research (LAuRes), University of Leuven (KU Leuven), 3000 Leuven, Belgium

Received 15 July 2015; Revised 10 October 2015; Accepted 18 October 2015

Academic Editor: Hansen Wang

Copyright © 2015 Greet Lambrechts et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Parents of young children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) encounter many daily challenges and often experience much stress. However, little research exists about parenting behavior among these parents. With this study, we aim to address this gap. We examined the structure and internal consistency of a questionnaire intended to measure parenting behavior among mothers of young children with ASD. Furthermore, we compared parenting behavior among mothers of young children with and without ASD between two and six years old. Factor analyses resulted in a factor solution with seven subscales of parenting behavior. Two additional subscales especially relevant for parenting preschoolers with ASD were also considered. Analyses of covariance, controlling for gender and age, showed significantly higher scores for Discipline and Stimulating the Development in the control group in comparison with the ASD group. These findings suggest that mothers of preschoolers with ASD are still trying to find strategies to guide and stimulate their child’s behavior and development effectively.