Low levels of enrollment and attendance in parent training programs present major problems for researchers and clinicians. The literature on enrollment and attendance in prevention programs is especially limited, and these constructs may be particularly difficult to address in this context. Further, most previous research has not made the distinction between enrollment and attendance. This study describes predictors of enrollment and attendance in a behavioral parent training program intended to prevent conduct problems in preschoolers. Information was gathered from 106 preschoolers, their parents, and their teachers. Parent socioeconomic status (SES), single parent status, ethnicity, child externalizing behavior, parent depressive symptoms, and parent social support were investigated as possible predictors of families’ enrollment and attendance. Only 48% of the families that had already provided informed consent and completed demographic questionnaires actually enrolled in the parent training program; parents with lower incomes and lower levels of social support were less likely to enroll. In addition, African-American and Puerto Rican families were less likely to enroll than Caucasian families. The average attendance rate for enrolled parents was 61%; dual parents and parents with children evidencing externalizing behavior problems attended more parent training sessions. Parent depression was not associated with enrollment or attendance. Significant relationships were maintained when controlling for other predictors including SES and when accounting for center-level variance. In addition, three distinct patterns of attendance were observed, which may have practical implications related to retention strategies.
Prevention Science – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 30, 2010
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