Original Paper

Child & Youth Care Forum

, Volume 37, Issue 4, pp 171-196

First online:

Parent Involvement in Early Childhood Home Visiting

  • Jon KorfmacherAffiliated withErikson Institute Email author 
  • , Beth GreenAffiliated withNPC Research, Inc.
  • , Fredi StaerkelAffiliated withUniversity of Wisconsin Oshkosh
  • , Carla PetersonAffiliated withIowa State University
  • , Gina CookAffiliated withUtah State University
  • , Lori RoggmanAffiliated withUtah State University
  • , Richard A. FaldowskiAffiliated withMedical University of South Carolina
  • , Rachel SchiffmanAffiliated withUniversity of Wisconsin Milwaukee

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This review provides an overview of an important aspect of early childhood home visiting research: understanding how parents are involved in program services and activities. Involvement is defined as the process of the parent connecting with and using the services of a program to the best of the client’s and the program’s ability. The term includes two broad dimensions: participation, or the quantity of intervention a family receives; and engagement, or the emotional quality of the family’s interaction with the program. Research that includes examination of parent involvement is reviewed, including examples from the Early Head Start Research and Evaluation Project. Factors that influence involvement are noted, including parent characteristics, qualities of the home visitor, and program features. The need for further measurement development and implications of these findings for home visiting programs are discussed.