Journal of Child and Family Studies

, Volume 10, Issue 2, pp 155–180 | Cite as

Parent Expectancies for Child Therapy: Assessment and Relation to Participation in Treatment

  • Matthew K. Nock
  • Alan E. Kazdin


Two studies examined parents' pre-treatment expectancies for their child's psychotherapy among children (N = 405, ages 2–15) referred for oppositional, aggressive, and antisocial behavior. Study I focused on the development of a measure to assess expectancies. The results indicated that the measure was internally consistent. Moreover, socioeconomic disadvantage and ethnic minority status, severity of child dysfunction, child age, and parental stress and depression were significant predictors of lower parent expectancies for child therapy. Study II examined the relation of parent expectancies and participation in therapy. The results indicated that parent expectancies predicted subsequent barriers to treatment participation, treatment attendance, and premature termination from therapy. Overall, these findings have implications for the study of expectancies for therapy, for identifying families at risk for premature termination from treatment, and for the development of interventions designed to increase parent participation in child therapy.

parent expectancies expectations child psychotherapy premature termination participation 


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Copyright information

© Human Sciences Press, Inc. 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Matthew K. Nock
    • 1
  • Alan E. Kazdin
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyYale UniversityNew Haven
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyYale UniversityNew Haven

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