Professor Stephen Basil Cuthbert Scott, MD, is the Director at the National Academy for Parenting Research. in London, England. The aim of this research program is to help practitioners deliver evidence-based parenting programs with fidelity and to test innovative approaches to the way services are delivered to families and children.
Earlier this year, Professor Scott was awarded the Commander of the Most Excellent, Order of the British Empire, for services to families. Congratulations Stephen! (Learn more about this award, here.)
Stephen has published numerous studies on various evidence-based programs, including a long-term follow up of two randomized controlled trials (RCTs) examining the effectiveness of treatment for children with antisocial personality traits. In the original trials, parents of the children participated in The Incredible Years® Parenting Program. This new research looks at the long-term results from this previous study.
This exciting publication is a 7-10 year follow-up of two RCTs that Stephen did with an indicated sample (children with severe antisocial behavior) and a selective sample (children labeled at high risk) when they were 3-7 years old. Results of the indicated sample were significantly improved for the parents who received the Incredible Years® (IY) Basic Parent Program at follow-up compared to parents who were in the usual psychotherapy treatment control condition. In the IY treatment condition group, parents noted their child’s emotion was warmer and supervision of adolescents was closer. Surprisingly, reading ability in the IY condition group was also improved compared with the usual treatment control condition. These results are important because of indications that early intervention for severely antisocial children may prevent the development of antisocial personality in adolescence and improved academic performance. It is also important because it is the first study to provide a long term follow-up evaluation of parents who received the IY intervention compared with families who received “usual treatment” in mental health centers.
In contrast, follow-up of the “selected high risk” sample who received the IY program in combination with a reading intervention did not show sustained effects compared with the control group families, despite having had good results in the short term. Possible reasons that these families did not show as much long-term improvement could be due to the fact that they had lower program dosage (did not receive as many parenting class sessions) as the indicated sample (families with children with severe antisocial behaviors). Additionally, this sample of families was not provided with ongoing support and booster sessions, which is particularly helpful for high-risk populations.
Scott, S., Briskman, J., & O’Connor, T. G. (2014) Early Prevention of Antisocial Personality: Long-term Follow-Up of Two Randomized Controlled Trials Comparing Indicated and Selected Approaches. American Journal of Psychiatry. Read the article here.
Be sure to look at Stephen’s other studies on our web site in the research library. Stay tuned for more research outcomes by this author, coming out soon.