Coaching parents to change: The impact of in vivo feedback on parents' acquisition of skills

Jenelle R. Shanley, Larissa N. Niec

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

66 Scopus citations


Behavioral parent training (BPT) includes a variety of evidence-based treatments with diverse techniques to alter parent behavior. Parent-Child Interaction Therapy is an innovative BPT with its use of in vivo feedback (i.e., "coaching") during parent-child interactions. An experimental design was used to assess whether coaching without elaborate didactic improves parenting. Sixty mothers with children 2 to 7 years old were recruited from the community and randomly assigned to a coaching or no coaching group. After a baseline assessment, all dyads participated in two play interactions 1 week apart during which parents in the coaching group were provided with in vivo feedback. Coached parents displayed significant improvements in skills, and coaching predicted skill gains beyond the influence of baseline ability. Findings suggest that providing parents with feedback through in vivo coaching is an important mechanism of change.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)282-287
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology


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