Coping Power/Utrecht Coping Power - an indicated programme for children with disruptive behaviour

At a glance

Country of origin: 
USA
Added to registry: 
Wednesday, October 18, 2017 - 09:00

Target group: 
Children aged 8-14 years with diagnosed disruptive behaviour disorder (DBD)
Age group: 
6-10 years
11-14 years
Programme setting(s): 
Community
Level(s) of intervention: 
Targeted intervention

The Utrecht Coping Power Programme (UCPP) was adapted from the Coping Power Programme (CPP), which was originally developed as a prevention programme for at-risk children. The programme was then adapted to everyday clinical practice for children diagnosed with DBD. It includes all of the essential elements of the CPP. The UCPP combines a cognitive behavioural intervention for the child with a behavioural parental intervention. There are 23 weekly sessions of 1.25 hours with groups of four children.

There are 15 parents’ sessions, which occur every other week, lasting 1.5 hours each. During the children’s sessions, there is recognition of feelings and emotions, social problem solving takes place, and communication skills are discussed and practised. The parents’ sessions focus on parenting skills, stress management and problem solving. The two components (parent and child) are integrated during the parents’ sessions by showing them videos of the children. The sessions take place in a clinical setting.

Keywords: 
No data
prevention
young people

Overview of results from the European studies

Last reviewed: 
Wednesday, October 18, 2017
Evidence rating: 
Beneficial
Studies overview: 

The programme has been evaluated in: one randomised controlled trial (RCT) in the Netherlands involving children aged 8-13 years with disruptive behaviour disorder; one quasi-experimental study in Italy involving children aged 8-9 years with disruptive behaviour disorders and comparing Coping Power to, respectively, no treatment and a multi-component programme based on cognitive-behavioural therapy; and three cluster RCTs in Italy, evaluating the programme in a classroom-based format – one with children aged approximately 7-8 years, one with children aged approximately nine years, and one with children aged four years.

In the Dutch RCT, there was a statistically significant effect favouring the intervention at post-test on parent-reported child aggression but not on parent-reported oppositional behaviour or teacher-reported externalising behaviour. About four years after the programme ended, there was a statistically significant effect favouring the intervention on self-reported use of cigarettes in the last month, but not on the use of alcohol or marijuana. However, there was a statistically significant effect favouring the intervention on self-reported lifetime use of marijuana (although not on alcohol or cigarettes). About four years after the programme ended, there was no difference between intervention and control conditions in self-reported delinquency.

In the Italian quasi-experimental study evaluating the targeted version of the programme, assessments were conducted at post-test and one year after the intervention ended but they were analysed together as longitudinal data. There was a statistically significant effect favouring Coping Power (compared to both the control and alternative intervention conditions) on parent-reported child aggressive behaviour and parent- and self-reported child callous traits, but not on parent-reported child rule-breaking behaviour. In terms of parent outcomes, there was a statistically significant effect on positive parenting and inconsistent discipline, but not on harsh discipline or involvement (parent-reported, compared to the other intervention).

In the Italian study with 7-8 year olds (in a universal version of the programme), there were statistically significant effects at post-test and 12 months after the programme ended on three of six teacher-reported child behaviours – prosocial behaviour, hyperactivity and total difficulties – but not on conduct problems, emotional symptoms or peer problems. At the follow-up, academic grades were also analysed, showing a statistically significant effect favouring the intervention.

In the Italian study with 4 year olds (in a universal version of the programme), there were statistically significant effects favouring the intervention at post-test on teacher-reported child conduct problems, prosocial behaviour and total difficulties (but not on emotional symptoms, hyperactivity or peer problems). Considering parent-reported measures, there was a statistically significant effect favouring the intervention at post-test for conduct problems only.

In the Italian study with 9-10 year olds, there was a statistically significant effect on all child outcomes measured, namely teacher-reported emotional symptoms, conduct problems and hyperactivity at post-test.

The programme has been rated as Promising by Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development database based on a review of studies conducted world-wide.

References of studies
Countries where evaluated: 
Italy
Netherlands
USA

Contact details: 

Dr Walter Matthys
Rudolf Magnus Institute of Neuroscience
University Medical Centre,
Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Utrecht 85500, 3508 GA
Utrecht, the Netherlands
Email: W.Matthys@umcutrecht.nl
Website: www.copingpower.com

Protective factor(s): 
Family: opportunities/rewards for prosocial involvement with parents
Individual and peers: clear morals and standards of behaviour
Individual and peers: interaction with prosocial peers
Individual and peers: Problem solving skills
Individual and peers: refusal skills
Individual and peers: skills for social interaction
Xchange Risk factor(s): 
Family: family management problems
Individual and peers: early initiation of anti-social behaviour
Individual and peers: favourable attitude towards alcohol/drug use
Individual and peers: favourable attitudes towards anti-social behaviour
Individual and peers: interaction with antisocial peers
Individual and peers: peers alcohol/drug use
Individual and peers: rebelliousness and alienation
School and work: low commitment/attachment to school
Outcomes targeted: 
Alcohol use
Use of illicit drugs
Smoking (tobacco)
Crime/Delinquency
Other behaviour outcomes
Description of programme: 

The Utrecht Coping Power Programme (UCPP) was adapted from the Coping Power Programme (CPP), which was originally developed as a prevention programme for at-risk children. The programme was then adapted to everyday clinical practice for children diagnosed with DBD. It includes all of the essential elements of the CPP. The UCPP combines a cognitive behavioural intervention for the child with a behavioural parental intervention. There are 23 weekly sessions of 1.25 hours with groups of four children. This is in contrast to the CPP where there are 33 sessions which last 50 minute each. There are 15 parents’ sessions, which occur every other week, lasting 1.5 hours each.

During the children’s sessions, there is recognition of feelings and emotions, social problem solving takes place, and communication skills are discussed and practised. The children are introduced to the five steps of social problem solving: what is the problem, what are the solutions, what are the consequences, choosing the best solution and acting on this. The parents’ sessions focus on parenting skills, stress management and problem solving. The two components (parent and child) are integrated during the parents’ sessions by showing them videos of the children. There are detailed manuals for both components and randomly selected videotaped sessions are reviewed to check they are adhered to. The sessions take place in a clinical setting.

Implementation Experiences: 

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