PY3PAR-Parent training for Conduct Problems

Module Provider: Psychology
Number of credits: 60 [30 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring / Summer / Autumn module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Module version for: 2017/8

Module Convenor: Ms Pam Myles


Summary module description:
Workshops in the module will cover the evidence base for PT, assessment and treatment strategies for conduct problems in children using both individual and group approaches. They will cover the main presentations of conduct problems, including proactive and reactive aggression, bullying, antisocial behaviour confined to the home context or pervasive (e.g. also expressed at school), comorbid conditions such as ADHD, callous-unemotional traits, learning disabilities, emotional dysregulation etc. It will also cover the main presentations, assessment and treatment of parenting difficulties in terms of the immediate parent-child relationship including child attachment, and the wider contextual factors that impede parenting ability, such as parental depression, substance misuse, domestic violence, life events and daily hassles, and parental learning disabilities. The focus at this stage is on children aged 3-10 years but interventions for children aged 10 years and above may be considered at a later point in the programme.

A. To develop practical competency in evidence-based PT for conduct problems in children aged 3-10
B. To develop knowledge of the theoretical and research literature of PT for conduct problems in children aged 3-10

Assessable learning outcomes:

At the end of the course students will be able to demonstrate the following:

1. A critical understanding of:

  • The principles of Social Learning theory (SLT)

  • The aetiology, phenomenology, diagnostic classifications and epidemiological characteristics of conduct problems in children, ADHD, ODD, CD

  • The aetiology and phenomenology of parenting styles and how they relate to conduct problems in children

  • Knowledge of cognitive and behavioural principles, including ABC analysis, detailed behavioural descriptions of behavioural problems and analysis of operant rewards including parental attention for antisocial behaviour

  • The clinical research literature on PT for conduct problems in children (clinical trials and outcome studies) including predictors, moderators, and mediators of treatment

  • Systemic factors influencing parenting and conduct disorder in children, for example peers, school and community risk and resilience factors

  • Knowledge on how to successfully engage parents and children

  • Knowledge of implementation science, including which factors lead to better outcomes (e.g. therapist skill, agency readiness and commitment)

The above will be assessed via an extended essay and case report.

2. Competency in assessing:

  • The extent of the child’s conduct problems, including the presence of comorbid conditions especially ADHD, autistic traits, callous-unemotional traits, generalised learning disability, anxiety and depression and other current difficulties; the impact of symptoms on functioning (e.g. on family life, school attendance and attainment, and relationships with peers), any significant life events and family and relationship problems, etc

  • The quality of parenting: engagement, warmth, stimulation, sensitive responding, encouragement and praise, disciplinary strategies and supervision. Understanding of different types of maltreatment (neglect, physical, emotional, sexual abuse) including prevalence, presentation and assessment. When to refer to children’s social care, legal duties of practitioner in relation to safeguarding

  • The inter-parental relationship including domestic violence

  • Parental mental health including depression, drug misuse, generalised learning disability, other conditions, predicaments or beliefs that inhibit parenting capacity; parental beliefs about the child, feelings towards him/her

  • Risk to the child of physical, sexual, emotional abuse and neglect; risks posed by the child to self and others

  • Suitability for group vs. individual PT or another modality of treatment

  • Formal and informal support systems available to parent or carer and child

  • Each of the above considerations to be informed by assessment using multiple informants (parent, child, teacher, other professionals)

The above will be assessed via feedback from supervisors.

3. Ability to engage with parents in both group and individual settings by showing an understanding of their viewpoint, ability to form a working alliance and set up agreed joint goals for treatment – assessed via feedback from supervisors and young people, and from supervisors.

4. Ability to identify the role of setting and prior events in triggering, and consequent events in maintaining the conduct problems and explain this model to parents and generate an understanding in parents of this process through exploration of their beliefs, discussion techniques, cognitive re-structuring and behavioural experiments – assessed via video-recording of parent training.

5. Ability to provide a rationale for the use of homework

Additional outcomes:
•Students will gain confidence in the assessment and treatment of young people with conduct disorders using parent training.
•Academically, students will develop skills in understanding of research and develop theory-practice links.
•Reflective practice will be integrated as part of all training within the module.

Outline content:

The module will be completed to obtain the required number of credits necessary for qualification (i.e. 60 credits). The teaching will be supplemented by an equivalent number of hours of clinical practice in the workplace under supervision of an experienced practitioner and supervisor.

Clinical Supervision

·         Each student will have clinical supervision weekly in a group of no more than 5 with occasional individual sessions in place of the group sessions.

·         Recorded material from at least six individual cases and two groups should be included at some point during the supervision sessions

·         At the end of the course when clinical work has been completed the supervisor will be asked to complete a pro-forma assessment form and indicate whether or not a student has reached a satisfactory level of clinical practice.

Global context:
Contact hours: (Each day is 5.75 hours)

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

The aims of this module will be achieved through the formal course, which will incorporate lectures, role-plays, and small group discussions, supervision.  These will last from 9.30 to 4.30 p.m. In addition, they will be supplemented by e-learning material and experience of assessment and treatment of patients within the workplace.  In addition, clinical practice and supervision of clinical practice will use specific case material to improve practice.

Contact hours: Each day is 5.75 hours for accreditation purposes

The module will comprise approximately 20 days of teaching, 18 days of clinical skills practice/supervision, 18 days of supervision in-service and 10 days of independent study. 

  • Total contact hours for this module will be a minimum of 600, to include lectures and clinical skills, university and work-based supervision and guided independent study.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Total hours by term
Total hours for module

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Report 40
Oral assessment and presentation 20
Practical skills assessment 40

Other information on summative assessment:

The assessment has three parts:

  1. One assessment of video-recording of individual parent training session using a standardised rating scale (related to 2)

  2. One extended case report (5000 words)

These 2 are equally weighted.

  1. Portfolio comprising reports on feedback from supervisors and young people and/or parents on their experience of therapy offered and report of the therapist’s clinical outcomes over the training period.

Autumn term

The assessment has four parts:

  1. One case study presentation of individual parent training treatment (30 minutes in length)

  2. One assessment of video-recording of group parent training for conduct disorder using a standardised rating scale (related to 3)

  3. One report of running a parent training group (5000 words)

These 3 are equally weighted.

Formative assessment methods:

4) Portfolio comprising audit of cases, clinical log, training log, reports on feedback from supervisors and young people and/or parents on their experience of the therapy offered and report of the therapist’s clinical outcomes over the course. The audit of cases should demonstrate that the students have run two groups for parents of at least six children over a minimum of 12 weeks and treated a minimum of 6 individual cases for 6-12 sessions across the training period.  The Final University Supervisor Report must be passed and placed inside the portfolio.  Any student who fails the final University Supervisor Report will be required to submit a recording of a treatment session demonstrating skill in the areas of deficit identified by the supervisor.  Once such a recording is deemed to pass on an agreed measure of competence and an appendix added to the supervisor report and placed inside the portfolio it can be submitted for final marking.

Penalties for late submission:
The Module Convenor will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy.

  • where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

  • The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
    You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

    Length of examination:

    Requirements for a pass:

    Refer to “Assessment” section above.  Students must gain a mark of 50% or over in part 1), and 40% in part 2) in the summer term with 3) formatively marked, and must gain a mark of 50% or over in part 2), and 40% in parts 1) and 3) in the autumn term and must pass 4) in the spring term which contributes to PYMBAS.  A minimum of 80% attendance is required.

    Reassessment arrangements:

    Students who do not obtain the required pass mark in the summative assessed work will be given the opportunity to resubmit on one further occasion, any individual assessment that has been failed. The re-sit grade cannot exceed 50% on clinical work and 40% on academic work.

    Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
    1) Required text books:
    2) Specialist equipment or materials:
    3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
    4) Printing and binding:
    5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
    6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

    Last updated: 25 April 2017

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