Respond to a colleague’s post by supporting or refuting ideas about his or her vision of how the study might be designed to gather data about the effectiveness of these parenting classes. Please use the Learning Resources to support your answer.
Use two peer reviewed references.
Would you recommend a pre-experimental, experimental, or quasi-experimental design? The research question and purpose are to determine the effectiveness of parenting classes by a social service agency. According to Chacon Mosoco, et al., program evaluations include: “The aspects to be included are presented in relation to the main stages of the evaluation process: needs, objectives and design (prior to the intervention), implementation (during the intervention), and outcomes (after the intervention)” (2013, p. 58). An experimental study design would be method to answer these questions. The researcher by this approach could directly observe scenarios depicting problematic child behavior and parental response.
Would the study involve measurement over time? Yes, but for a short amount of time. A pre-test inventory questionnaire would be administered to the experimental group and the control group. Then the experimental group would receive parenting classes. Then a post-test would be given to both groups. Parenting strengths, areas of concern, and motivation for change are the types of questions that could be used in pre-test inquiry (Dishion, et al., 2008).
Would there be a control group? Yes, so that a comparison could be made between the groups after the intervention of parenting class, to see if the independent variable affected the dependent.
In this group research design, you imagine, what or who will be compared?
Who would include:
- A randomized sampling of the population
- Mandated participants vs. voluntary
What would be compared:
- Parental stressors
- Parenting/disciplinary styles
- Parenting beliefs, values, backgrounds
- Satisfaction inventory scales
- Knowledge of alternative ways to communicate
What limitations in terms of generalizability and internal validity can you anticipate based on the research plan you envision? Because of the diversity of the population, individual characteristics will be missed limiting generalizability. Such as in Juan and Elena Hernandez family’s experiences and upbringing. Both are Puerto Rican where patriarchal hierarchy is unquestioned. Not every participant will have had this life experience. Internal validity would also be threatened because of the time between tests, selection, regression, testing effects, mortality, or changes in the instrumentation or observations used (Yegidis, 2018).
What can you tell the social worker about the issue of client drop out (also called attrition or experimental mortality)? Involvement of a social service agency in family relationships is alarming. The workers in the video referred to understanding that some families would not finish the classes for one reason or another (Plummer, et al, 2014). A misconception that the agency is going to remove the children from the parents causes mistrust and hostility. This would lead to rigid denial of services and attrition. Families in lower socioeconomic classes are most likely the ones served. Work obligations and not agreeing with the importance of agency interventions might also lead to drop-out. Low educational levels also contribute to not understanding what is expected of them or that classes are a waste of time.
Chacon Moscoso, S., Sanduvete, Chaves, S., Portell Vidal, M., & Anguera Argilaga, M. T. (2013). Reporting a program evaluation: Needs, program plan, intervention, and decisions. International Journal of Clinical Health & Psychology, 13(1), 58-66.
Dishion, T. J., Shaw, D., Connell, A., Gardner, F., Weaver, C., & Wilson, M. (2008). The family check-up with high-risk indigent families: Preventing problem behavior by increasing parents’ positive behavior support in early childhood. Child Development, 79, 1395-1414.
Plummer, S.-B., Makris, S., & Brocksen S. M. (Eds.). (2014). Sessions: Case histories. Baltimore, MD: Laureate International Universities Publishing. [Vital Source e-reader].
Yegidis, B. L., Weinbach, R. W., & Myers, L. L. (2018). Research methods for social workers (8th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Allyn & Bacon.