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Interventions for foster care families (Lorio et al., 2023)

Version 2 2023-03-31, 21:25
Version 1 2022-12-20, 18:27
posted on 2023-03-31, 21:25 authored by Ciera M. Lorio, Judith J. Carta, Nathan Stephens

Purpose: Children in foster care are at an increased risk for language delays and disorders, and foster parents can play a significant role in preventing delays in early language development. This scoping review explored empirical studies that included foster parent training programs for families with foster children under the age of 5 years.

Method: Using the PRISMA-ScR (Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses extension for scoping reviews), multiple databases were searched, and resulting article titles and abstracts were screened for inclusion in the review. Each study that met inclusion criteria was then coded for the training methods used to teach foster parents intervention strategies and the targeted outcomes of the intervention.

Results: A total of 24 studies were identified. Of the 24 studies reviewed, all included interventions focused on increasing parent–child relationships and decreasing child challenging behaviors, but few included opportunities for foster parents to practice using intervention strategies with their foster child. None of the studies focused specifically on strategies for promoting children’s language development. When outcomes across the studies were reviewed, only two focused on children’s language.

Conclusions: The results of this review point to the need for more research on language interventions that can be implemented by foster parents. The discussion focuses on the important role speech-language pathologists can play in the prevention of early language delays or disorders in young foster children.

Supplemental Material S1. Search strings and number of articles located.

Supplemental Material S2. Additional foster child demographics.

Supplemental Material S3. Foster care intervention programs across studies.

Supplemental Material S4. Additional information on methods and outcomes of foster parent training.

Lorio, C. M., Carta, J. J., & Stephens, N. (2023). Exploring language development support for foster children: A scoping review of interventions for foster care families. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 32(1), 358–376.


This project was supported by the Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA) of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (USDHHS) under cooperative agreements UA6MC27762 and U6DMC42197, through the Bridging the Word Gap Research Network program.