Effectiveness of a parent training program in (pre)adolescence: evidence from a randomized controlled trial

J Adolesc. 2012 Aug;35(4):833-42. doi: 10.1016/j.adolescence.2011.11.009. Epub 2011 Dec 15.


The present randomized controlled trial examined the effectiveness of the parent training program Parents and Children Talking Together (PCTT) for parents with children in the preadolescent period who experience parenting difficulties. The program is focused on reducing child problem behavior by improving parents' communication and problem solving skills, and disciplining behavior. Largest effects were expected for families with higher SES, and with children in mid-adolescence. Multi-informant and multi-method data were used from 78 self-referred families with children aged 9-16 (M=13.09, SD=1.75). Intention-to-treat analysis (retention rate 95%; immediate posttest only) showed that participation in PCTT significantly improved parents' communication and problem solving skills (F(1,70)=11.77, p<0.01 and F(1,70)=12.87, p<0.01), and reduced their dysfunctional disciplining behavior in conflict situations (F(1,70)=5.25, p<.0.05). The PCTT intervention was most effective for parents with higher SES and for parents with children between the ages of 14 and 16. No consistent gender effects were found.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Child
  • Child Behavior / psychology
  • Communication
  • Conflict, Psychological
  • Education / methods
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Parent-Child Relations
  • Parenting* / psychology
  • Problem Solving
  • Psychology, Adolescent / education
  • Punishment