Validating the Parent Cognition Scale
Investigators: Magdalena Lysenko, M.A., Lee Propp, B.Sc., & Brendan F. Andrade, Ph.D.
Introduction: The explanations that parents give about the causes of their child's behavioural difficulties are associated with parental behaviours, children's behaviours, and family functioning. In contrast to the lengthy parental cognition interviews that are common in research, the Parent Cognition Scale (PCS) is a short (30 items) self-report measure that assesses parent attributions for the cause of their child's behaviour problems.
Objectives: This study examines the factor structure and validity of the PCS in a clinical sample of parents presenting to a children's mental health clinic because of their children's disruptive behaviour.
Health and Clinical Relevance: This study will validate the potential utility of the PCS for use within a clinical context to enhance assessment, screening and treatment planning for parents of children with disruptive behaviour disorders.
Project Stage: Manuscript Preparation
Funding Source: Ontario Mental Health Foundation; Canadian Child Health Clinician Scientist Program
Validating the Child Aggression Measurement System
Introduction: To measure childhood aggression, clinicians and researchers often rely on parent and teacher reports. Although the child's perspective of their behaviour can be useful to treatment planning, there are a limited number of clinical tools that have been validated for use with clinical samples of children with disruptive behaviour.
Objectives: This study will determine the validity and utility of the Child Aggression Measurement System among 9 – 12 year old children receiving services from an outpatient children's mental health clinic.
Project Results: Analyses identified four factors, including Pure-overt, Reactive-relational, Reactive-overt and Instrumental-overt forms and functions of aggression. Further, identified factors showed significant correlations with child-reported dimensions of behaviour but relatively low correlation with parents' report of child difficulties.
Project Stage: Manuscript Under Review
Health and Clinical Relevance: This project will determine the validity of a child measure of aggression for use in a clinical setting.
A Person-Centered Approach to Understanding Social Problems in Children with Disruptive Behaviour
Investigators: Madison Aitken, Ph.D., Shanelle Henry, B.A., Brendan F. Andrade, Ph.D.
Introduction: Children with disruptive behaviour disorders are a heterogeneous group with a number of characteristics that are associated with poor peer relationships, including reactive and proactive aggression, callous-unemotional (CU) traits, and limited prosocial behaviour. However, it is unclear how these characteristics interact, and whether interactions between these domains of psychopathology are differentially associated with problems in peer relationships.
Objectives: This project uses person-centered methodology to understand how aggression, CU traits, and prosocial skills cluster among children with disruptive behaviour, and how these clusters are differentially associated with children's peer relationship functioning.
Health and Clinical Relevance: This project will identify how key aspects of children's emotional and behavioural functioning are associated to provide potential avenues for personalized clinical intervention.
Project Stage: Manuscript Under Review
Verbal Ability and Response to Evidence-Based Group Treatment in Children with Disruptive Behaviour Disorders
Investigators: Shanelle Henry, B.A. & Brendan F. Andrade, Ph.D.
Introduction: Language and verbal abilities are associated with severity of disruptive behaviour in children with Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Conduct Disorder. Treatment programs for children with disruptive behaviour often involve verbally-based approaches. However, some children who have verbal deficits may have challenges with understanding and carrying out the strategies they learn in treatment, thereby limiting treatment effectiveness
Objectives: This study will determine whether children's verbal ability predicts outcomes of cognitive-behavioural group treatment on reducing children's Conduct Problems and Externalizing Behaviour.
Health and Clinical Relevance: Developing a better understanding of how verbal abilities impact treatment outcome will contribute to potential modified approaches to assessment and intervention that are tailored to children's verbal abilities.
Funding Source: Ontario Mental Health Foundation; Canadian Child Health Clinician Scientist Program; Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC; funding to Ms. Henry)
Comparing the Effectiveness of Group and Individualized Parent Training Treatment for Increasing Parental Efficacy and Satisfaction in the Context of Child Conduct Problems
Investigators: Jaclyn Ludmer, M.A., Marcos Sanchez, M.Sc. & Brendan F. Andrade, Ph.D.
Introduction: Parent training (PT) for parents of children with conduct problems are widely used developmental group or individual interventions that facilitate parenting skills and competencies in order to positively impact child behaviour. On average, these interventions show moderate effects for increasing parental perceptions of their parenting satisfaction and efficacy. However, despite these encouraging findings, it is unclear which format of intervention (i.e., group or individual) might be more effective for parents.
Objectives: Determining which treatment format best improves parental efficacy and satisfaction is necessary to inform interventions to best target children's conduct problems. Severity of child difficulties is an important driver of treatment seeking and negatively impacts treatment outcome. Thus, this study aimed to determine whether group and individualized treatment are comparable in effectiveness for changing parental perceptions, over and above the effects of initial levels of child difficulties.
Project Results: Results showed that parenting efficacy and satisfaction significantly increased from pre to post PT, but there were no significant differences between group and individualized treatment, controlling for initial child difficulties.
Health and Clinical Relevance: This study will help to further clarify which format of treatment is most useful to which parents and inform personalized care pathways.
Project Stage: Manuscript In Press
Positive Parenting Mediates the Effectiveness of Parent Training for Parents with Internalizing Symptoms
Investigators: Jaclyn Ludmer, M.A., Debbie Salsbury, B.A., Jessica Suarez, B.A. & Brendan F. Andrade, Ph.D.
Introduction: Parent training (PT) targeting children's disruptive behaviour may not be as effective for parents with histories of mood or anxiety symptoms (i.e., internalizing symptoms) as it is for other parents.
Objectives: This study aimed to determine which dimensions of parenting, notably parenting efficacy, positive parenting, inconsistent discipline, and poor supervision, account for (i.e., mediate) the association between parent lifetime internalizing symptoms and treatment outcomes (i.e., post-PT child difficulties).
Project Results: Positive parenting fully mediated the relation between parent lifetime internalizing symptoms and elevated child post-PT emotional and behavioural difficulties. Parents with higher levels of internalizing symptoms reported lower positive parenting post-PT, which in turn predicted more child difficulties post-PT.
Health and Clinical Relevance: This project identified parenting characteristics that limit treatment effectiveness for parents with mood and anxiety difficulties. Findings will contribute to clinical discussion, practice change and future clinical innovation.