Fatherhood Matters: An Integrative Review of Fatherhood Intervention Research

J Sch Nurs. 2020 Feb;36(1):19-32. doi: 10.1177/1059840519873380. Epub 2019 Sep 8.


Positive father involvement is critical to the healthy social, emotional, and academic outcomes of children at all stages of development. The purpose of this integrative review was to identify, categorize, and evaluate the potential impact of fatherhood interventions on father and child outcomes. A systematic search of four major research databases yielded 44 studies published between 1988 and 2018 that met study inclusion criteria. The most effective interventions were delivered in the community, with fathers convened in groups. Content focused on promoting positive parenting, co-parenting, and father/child relationships. Consequently, father involvement and child cognitive and socioemotional development were improved. Academic settings were underutilized in the fatherhood interventions in this review. We conclude that in order to optimize healthy child development, school officials must adopt a more inclusive stance toward the involvement of fathers in their children's education. Future randomized trials of fatherhood interventions delivered within school-based settings are warranted.

Keywords: early childhood/early intervention; integrative reviews; parent/family; school nurse education.

Publication types

  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Academic Success
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Child
  • Child Development*
  • Community Participation
  • Ethnicity
  • Father-Child Relations*
  • Fathers*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Health
  • Middle Aged
  • Parenting*
  • Schools