Examining Parents’ Preferences for Group Parent Training for ADHD When Individual Parent Training is Unavailable

Frances A. Wymbs, Yvonne Chen, Heather M. Rimas, Ken Deal, Daniel A. Waschbusch, William E. Pelham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Parent training programs are considered well-established interventions for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in children as they reduce behavioral impairment, but limited parent engagement decreases service effectiveness. We used a discrete choice experiment to examine how parent preferences for group vs. individual format might influence their participation in Parent training. Parents (N = 260) seeking mental health services for children with elevated symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in Ontario, Canada were participants. They preferred Individual parent training in another study and completed a discrete choice experiment composed of 30 choice tasks measuring Parent training format preference. In this paper, parents’ preferences for alternatives to Individual Parent training, specifically Group Parent training and Minimal Information options, were estimated. Specifically, this study asked “if first choice is unavailable, what is the second choice?” This question is important as many clinics may not be able to offer both group and individual therapy given state funding cuts for youth mental health services. Simulations predicted that 85.8 % of parents who initially preferred Individual Parent training would switch to Group Parent training that included step-by-step solutions to children’s emotional and behavior problems, and the possibility of feeling informed and confident. The remaining 14.2 % of parents preferred Minimal Information; these parents preferred internet services offered conveniently and timely. Findings highlight consideration of less appealing factors that families might trade for more desirable service elements in a cost-restrictive environment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)888-904
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Child and Family Studies
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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