Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Dr. C. Richard Spates

Second Advisor

Dr. Scott Kollins

Third Advisor

Dr. Helen D. Pratt

Fourth Advisor

Dr. J. Scott Allen


Noncompliance with parent requests is a commonly reported behavior problem for clinic-based child referrals. Parent skills training has been empirically demonstrated as an effective treatment for helping parents increase positive child behaviors and decrease negative behaviors. Unfortunately, many therapists and agencies are unable to implement parent-training programs due to limited therapist training, limited economic resources, or long waiting lists.

Adjunctive, computer-based, treatment programs have become increasingly popular in both research and clinical settings for facilitating psychological assessment and intervention. This project involved the development and preliminary investigation of the effectiveness and acceptability of a computer-based program designed to supplement therapist-delivered parent training. The computer-based parent-training adjunct uses video-based skills training scenarios, graphics, text, video an d audio presentation to present target concepts and procedures and assess user skills and knowledge acquisition.

A multiple-baseline, across families design was used to collect probe data regarding program effectiveness as measured through in home parent-recorded child behavioral observations. Additional measures used to investigate potential program effectiveness and acceptability included: (a) written knowledge quizzes, (b) observations of parent behaviors in a clinic-based role-play procedure, (c) a computer-based video scenario quiz, and (d) a consumer satisfaction questionnaire.

Parent-recorded child behavior observations indicated a significant decrease in child noncompliance following introduction of the computer-adjunctive intervention. Written and computer delivered measures of target concepts and procedural knowledge suggest effective teaching and modeling of parent training principles. However, parents demonstrated varied performance on an in-clinic role-play procedure. In a limited experimental sample, probe data suggests high consumer satisfaction with the computer-based adjunctive program.

These preliminary results support continued development of computer-based clinical adjuncts that may provide economical, effective, and socially valid supplements to therapist-delivered interventions.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access