• The Parent University Program: Factors Predicting Change in Responsive Parenting Behaviors

      Liggett-Creel, Kyla; Barth, Richard P., 1952-; Berlin, Lisa J. (2016)
      There are few evidence-based parenting programs for children under the age of three and even fewer have been rigorously evaluated in comparison to parenting programs for older children (Barth & Liggett-Creel, 2014). Parenting programs such as Child-Parent Psychotherapy, Circle of Security, Promoting First Relationships, Chicago Parent Program, and Attachment and Biobehavioral Catch-up have shown positive outcomes. Common components are beginning to be identified in successful parenting programs for families with children ages birth to three years old. The Parent University Program (PUP) integrates common components of five evidence-based interventions for children birth through three years old. Parent-child dyads (N=86) participated in the parenting program with the goal of increasing responsive parenting skills. This study aims to assess the changes that may occur in responsive parenting behaviors that promote social emotional growth, cognitive growth, sensitivity to cues, and responding to the distress of their child. Results will add to parenting program research on the use of common components, real world implementation and evaluation, and the use of peers as facilitators. Participants of the PUP showed a significant increase in responsive parenting behaviors. Participants who completed pre-test, post-test, and follow-up assessments showed a significant change from clinical to non-clinical status after attending the PUP. Neither the type of facilitator nor the number of hours attended showed an association with changing parenting behaviors. The age of the child was associated with the change in responsive parenting. Older children had higher scores at pre-test and showed less change over time. The results of this research suggest that further evaluation is warranted with more rigorous study design including a randomized clinical trial.