The impact of message content and format on initial parental engagement in a parenting intervention: An experimental study

Article


Gonzalez, Carolina, Morawska, Alina and Haslam, Divna M.. 2022. "The impact of message content and format on initial parental engagement in a parenting intervention: An experimental study." Cognitive Therapy and Research. 46 (5), p. 927–939. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10608-022-10305-0
Article Title

The impact of message content and format on initial parental engagement in a parenting intervention: An experimental study

ERA Journal ID6196
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsGonzalez, Carolina, Morawska, Alina and Haslam, Divna M.
Journal TitleCognitive Therapy and Research
Journal Citation46 (5), p. 927–939
Number of Pages13
Year2022
PublisherSpringer
Place of PublicationUnited States
ISSN0147-5916
1573-2819
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1007/s10608-022-10305-0
Web Address (URL)https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10608-022-10305-0
Abstract

Background
Engagement strategies are commonly used to enhance parents’ involvement in parenting interventions. However, few strategies have been evaluated to determine their effectiveness at increasing initial engagement. This study tested the effectiveness of message content (benefits vs. costs) and format (video vs. written) of engagement strategies on the initial engagement (i.e., recruitment, enrolment, and first attendance) of parents to parenting interventions.

Methods
Participants were 692 parents of children aged 2 to 12 years old. Parents were randomly allocated to one of four experimental conditions, which tested the combination of message (benefits vs. costs) and format (video vs. written). Recruitment, enrolment, and first attendance were measured as part of parent’s initial engagement to a self-directed parenting intervention.

Results
Neither message content nor format had an effect on recruitment, enrolment, or first attendance. However, parents who saw the costs content were significantly more likely to review the intervention workbook compared to parents who saw the message about the benefits of the intervention.

Conclusions
Brief testimonials have the potential to early engage parents when the message is positive, independently of its format. Future research should further explore the effects of different messages as well as other engagement strategies used to engage parents.

KeywordsParents; Parental engagement ; Engagement strategies; Parent training; Experimental design
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020520302. Clinical psychology
520101. Child and adolescent development
420603. Health promotion
Byline AffiliationsUniversity of Queensland
Queensland University of Technology
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