Examining Inter-family Differences in Intra-family (Parent–Adolescent) Dynamics Using Grid-Sequence Analysis

Miriam Brinberg, Gregory M. Fosco, Nilam Ram

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Scopus citations


Family systems theorists have forwarded a set of theoretical principles meant to guide family scientists and practitioners in their conceptualization of patterns of family interaction—intra-family dynamics—that,over time, give rise to family and individual dysfunction and/or adaptation. In this article, we present ananalytic approach that merges state space grid methods adapted from the dynamic systems literature withsequence analysis methods adapted from molecular biology into a “grid-sequence” method for studyinginter-family differences in intra-family dynamics. Using dyadic data from 86 parent–adolescent dyadswho provided up to 21 daily reports about connectedness, we illustrate how grid-sequence analysis canbe used to identify a typology of intrafamily dynamics and to inform theory about how specific types ofintrafamily dynamics contribute to adolescent behavior problems and family members’ mental health.Methodologically, grid-sequence analysis extends the toolbox of techniques for analysis of familyexperience sampling and daily diary data.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)994-1004
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Family Psychology
Issue number8
StatePublished - 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Psychology


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