Family Health Development

Led by Mark Feinberg, PhD
Penn State University

Current research, policy, and practice perspectives often apply static and/or child-focused models to inform interventions and policies. The Family Node proposes a life course perspective on family health (rather than child health) to offer useful tools to address structural inequality for families.

The node will also seek to make recommendations for how to use this model in interventions—these include policy/system-level interventions as well as family-level intervention programs.

Projects and Grants


Feinberg and Hock: Test of an Innovative, Scalable Support Program for Parents with a Young Child Recently Diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (NIH R01)

Berge: Family Matters Cohort Study: Examining Risk and Protective Factors for Obesity Across the Lifecourse (NIH R01)

Berge: Family Matters Intervention: Using ecological momentary intervention and community health workers to reduce obesity disparities by race/ethnicity NIH R61/33)

Roy: Impact of immigrant Fathers on Child Health and Well-Being over the Life Course (LCIRN pilot study)

Roy & Lewin: Strengthening Community Mental Health among Latino Immigrant Youth and Families. (Annie E. Casey)

Thoma & Roy: Evaluation of Carefirst. (Prince George County Dept of Public Health)

Roy, Fryer, and Richardson: Black Men’s Mental Health: Healing from Complex Trauma and Toxic Environments (U Maryland Brain & Behavior Institute)

Lewin & Roy: Encuentros: A rapid cycle evaluation of a community mental health intervention


Feinberg: Measuring impacts of COVID-19 on family development (Penn State)


Designing Evidence-Based Public Health and Prevention Programs : Expert Program Developers Explain the Science and Art; Edited By Mark E. Feinberg

Ammerman RT, Peugh JL, Teeters AR, et al. Promoting parenting in home visiting: A CACE analysis of Family FoundationsJournal of Family Psychology. 2021. Advance online publication.

Ayala GX, King A, Monge R, Hunter R, Berge, J. The Social Environment and Childhood Obesity: Implications for Research and Practice in the Unites States and countries in Latin America. Obesity Reviews. 2021; 22( S3):e13246.

Berge JM, Hazzard VM, Larson N, et al. Are there protective associations between family/shared meal routines during COVID-19 and dietary health and emotional well-being in diverse young adults? Preventive Medicine Reports. 2021; 24; 101575

Berge JM, Cheatom O, Fertig AR, et al. Examining the Relationship Between Parental Stress and Girls’ and Boys’ Physical Activity Among Racially/Ethnically Diverse and Immigrant/Refugee Populations. Pediatr Exerc Sci. 2021 May 6;33(3):97-102. doi: 10.1123/pes.2020-0190. PMID: 33958503.

Berge JM, Larson N, Neumark-Sztainer D. Emerging Adults and Social Distancing During COVID-19: Who Was More Likely to Follow Guidelines and What Were the Correlates With Well-Being and Weight-Related Behaviors? Emerging Adulthood. 2021;9(6):670-678. doi:10.1177/21676968211051482

Giallo R, Fogarty A, Seymour M, et al. Family Foundations To promote parent mental health and family functioning during the COVID-19 pandemic in Australia: A mixed methods evaluation. Journal of Family Studies. 2021. DOI: 10.1080/13229400.2021.2019606

Feinberg ME, A Mogle J, Lee JK, et al. Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Parent, Child, and Family Functioning [published online ahead of print, 2021 Apr 8]. Fam Process. 2021;10.1111/famp.12649. doi:10.1111/famp.12649

Findley, E., LaBrenz, C. A., Childress, S., Vásquez-Schut, G., & Bowman, K. (2022). ‘I’m not perfect’: Navigating screen time among parents of young children during COVID-19. Child: Care, Health and Development, 48(6);1094-1102

Fosco GM, Sloan CJ, Fang S, and Feinberg, ME. Family vulnerability and disruption during the COVID-19 pandemic: prospective pathways to child maladjustment. J Child Psychol Psychiatr, 2022; 63: 47-57.

Jones EJ, Feinberg ME, Graham-Engeland JE, et al. A Perinatal Coparenting Intervention Is Associated with Better Parent Health Outcomes Eight Years Later. PsyArXiv, 3 Aug. 2021. Web.

Nix RL, Francis LA, Feinberg ME, et al. Improving Toddlers’ Healthy Eating Habits and Self-regulation: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Pediatrics. January 2021; 147 (1): e20193326. 10.1542/peds.2019-3326

Riina, E. M., Lee, J. K., Feinberg, M. E. (2020) Bidirectional associations between youth adjustment and mothers’ and fathers’ coparenting conflict. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 49(8), 1617-1630

Roy K & Yumiseva M. Family separation and transnational fathering practices for immigrant Northern Triangle families. J Fam Theory Rev, 13: 283-299.

Siennick, S., Widdowson, A., Feinberg, M. E. (2020) Youth with co-occurring delinquency and depressive symptoms: Do they have better or worse delinquent outcomes? Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 49(6), 1260-1276


Collaborative partners

Mark Feinberg, Penn State University

Jerica Berge, University of Minnesota

Saltanat Childress, UT Arlington

Nastassia Hajal, UCLA

Emily Hotez, UCLA

Christy Ledford, Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University

Amy Lewin, University of Maryland

Kevin Roy, University of Maryland

If you are interested in joining, please contact Mark Feinberg at