Document Type




Format of Original

11 p.; 23 cm

Publication Date



Taylor & Francis (Routledge)

Source Publication

The Journal of Genetic Psychology

Source ISSN



Behavior problems are prevalent in young children and those living in poverty are at increased risk for stable, high-intensity behavioral problems. Research has demonstrated that participation in child and parent therapy (CPT) programs significantly reduces problematic child behaviors while increasing positive behaviors. However, CPT programs, particularly those implemented with low-income populations, frequently report high rates of attrition (over 50%). Parental attributional style has shown some promise as a contributing factor to treatment attendance and termination in previous research. The authors examined if parental attributional style could predict treatment success in a CPT program, specifically targeting low-income urban children with behavior problems. A hierarchical logistic regression was used with a sample of 425 families to assess if parent- and child-referent attributions variables predicted treatment success over and above demographic variables and symptom severity. Parent-referent attributions, child-referent attributions, and child symptom severity were found to be significant predictors of treatment success. Results indicated that caregivers who viewed themselves as a contributing factor for their child's behavior problems were significantly more likely to demonstrate treatment success. Alternatively, caregivers who viewed their child as more responsible for their own behavior problems were less likely to demonstrate treatment success. Additionally, more severe behavior problems were also predictive of treatment success. Clinical and research implications of these results are discussed.


Accepted version. The Journal of Genetic Psychology, Vol. 177, No. 2 (March/April 2016): 44-54. DOI. © 2016 Taylor & Francis (Routledge). Used with permission.

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