School of Behavioral Sciences


Doctor of Education in Community Care and Counseling (EdD)


Courtney Evans-Thompson


Communication, Parenting Practices, Child Development, Parental Competence


Counseling | Social and Behavioral Sciences


Communication is the process of sending and receiving messages. Such messages may impact an individual’s overall functioning across the lifespan. Parents are usually the first source of information exchange for children. The Systematic Training for Effective Parenting (STEP), originally published in 1976, is an education program that teaches positive parenting and effective communication strategies. STEP encourages parents to embrace concepts of mutual respect and equality while creating opportunities for parents to meet the demands of raising children. There is limited data assessing parental change in communication patterns among parents of young school-aged children following systematic training. Twelve parents with children in second and third grade were recruited for this study. All participants completed the Self-Efficacy Scale (SES), Kansas Parental Satisfaction Scale (KPSS), and the Open-ended Questionnaire pre and post participation in the program. This study helps fill the gap in the literature regarding changes in parental responses and perception of parenting skills following participation in the STEP program for young school-aged children.

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