Therapist-parent interactions in PCIT: The importance of coach coding

Miya L. Barnett, Eileen M. Davis, Ciera E. Schoonover, Larissa N. Niec

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Therapist coaching (i.e., in vivo feedback) of parent behaviors is a core component of parent-child interaction therapy (PCIT). Coaching allows therapists to teach and reinforce parenting behaviors in the moment that they occur. Until recently, limited research had investigated the types of coaching skills that were associated with improved parent skill development and engagement in treatment. This chapter will review efforts to date to measure and evaluate the role of therapist-parent interactions on PCIT using the Therapist-Parent Interaction Coding System (TPICS). The TPICS measures the types of coaching techniques therapists use (e.g., modeling a skill, praising the parent's skill use) and the parent behaviors targeted (e.g., behavior descriptions, questions). Coaching techniques are categorized as being directive (i.e., telling a parent what to do) or responsive (i.e., reinforcing a parent's behavior). Based on the research on therapist-parent interactions, recommendations will be made on how the assessment of therapist behaviors can be used to improve training and supervision in PCIT.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook of Parent-Child Interaction Therapy
Subtitle of host publicationInnovations and Applications for Research and Practice
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9783319976983
ISBN (Print)9783319976976
StatePublished - Nov 10 2018


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