Resources for applying a life course perspective

April 28, 2023

Two core values of the Center for Children with Special Health Care Needs are centering care on family systems and using a life course lens in the care of children and families. This column features a national partner in this work, the Life Course Intervention Research Network (LCIRN). Funded by the Maternal and Child Health Bureau of the Health Research and Services Administration, LCIRN is a collaborative of researchers, service providers and thought leaders who support researchers and providers in developing, implementing, and evaluating interventions to help children and families thrive and achieve optimal health development.

Through LCIRN, center members and their collaborators and stakeholders can access a broad set of resources for applying a life course perspective in research and practice with children and youth with special needs and their families. Three particularly useful resources to advance equity, partnership and measurement centered on the family are listed below. To access the LCIRN's full set of tools and resources, visit

1. Engaging Families and Communities in Life Course Intervention Research
Clarissa Hoover and colleagues provide a framework for planning and implementing interventions in true partnership with families.  
2. Life Course Intervention Researcher Core Competencies
Emily Hotez and colleagues outline 29 competencies across five domains for life course intervention research and training.
3. Compendium of Family Functioning Measures
This compendium provides a matrix of 40 validated family functioning tools that assess different aspects of family measurement such as organizational processes, belief systems and communication processes.