Parenting self-efficacy, parenting stress and child behaviour before and after a parenting programme.

Linda Bloomfield, S. Kendall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)
374 Downloads (Pure)


Aim: To explore whether changes in parenting self-efficacy after attending a parenting programme are related to changes in parenting stress and child behaviour.
Background: Adverse parenting is a risk factor in the development of a range of health and behavioural problems in childhood and is predictive of poor adult outcomes. Strategies for supporting parents are recognised as an effective way to improve the health, well-being and development of children. Parenting is influenced by many factors including the behaviour and characteristics of the child, the health and psychological well-being of the parent and the contextual influences of stress and support. Parenting difficulties are a major source of stress for parents, and parenting self-efficacy has been shown to be an important buffer against parenting stress.
Methods: In all, 63 parents who had a child under the age of 10 years took part in the research. Of those, 58 returned completed measures of parenting self-efficacy, parenting stress and child behaviour at the start of a parenting programme and 37 at three-month follow-up.
Findings: Improvements in parenting self-efficacy and parenting stress were found at follow-up, but there was less evidence for improvements in child behaviour. The findings clearly suggest a relationship between parenting self-efficacy and parenting stress; parents who are feeling less efficacious experience higher levels of stress, whereas greater parenting self-efficacy is related to less stress. This study adds to the evidence that parent outcomes may be a more reliable measure of programme effectiveness than child outcomes at least in the short term.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)364-372
Number of pages8
JournalPrimary Health Care Research & Development (PHCR&D)
Issue number4
Early online date2 Apr 2012
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2012


  • Parenting
  • self-efficacy
  • parenting-stress


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