Personal and Environmental Factors Predict Participation of Children With and Without Mild Developmental Disabilities

Limor Rosenberg*, Orit Bart, Navah Z. Ratzon, Tal Jarus

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Enhancing participation in age-related activities is a key goal in the education and rehabilitation of children with diverse disabilities. The aim of this study was to explore a multidimensional and ecological model of participation for young children. Seventy eight children with mild developmental disabilities (MDD, such as motor and visual-motor difficulties), and 110 children without disabilities, between the ages 4 and 6 years old, participated in the study together with their parents. Data were collected using standardized assessments for child capacities and newly developed questionnaires for child participation and for human and physical environmental factors. Associations were found between personal and environmental factors and the participation dimensions amongst young children, thus supporting the validity of the proposed model of participation. Moreover, the study results outline different pathways for the participation of children with and without MDD. Child factors (e.g. process skills) were found to be crucial predictors of participation particularly for children with MDD, whereas human environmental factor (e.g. maternal self-efficacy beliefs) was associated with higher participation scores especially for children without disabilities. These findings may facilitate the development of effective intervention programs which focus on environmental factors as well as on child factors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)658-671
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Child and Family Studies
Issue number5
StatePublished - Jul 2013


  • Child participation
  • Child personal factors
  • Ecological model
  • Environmental factors
  • Parenting efficacy beliefs
  • Process skills


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