Engaging fathers in behavioral parent training: Listening to fathers' voices

Abraham Salinas*, J. C. Smith, Kathleen Armstrong

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


This is a qualitative study documenting the experiences of fathers who participated in the Helping Our Toddlers, Developing Our Children's Skills (HOT DOCS) behavioral parent training (BPT) series and later agreed to participate in a focus group. Focus groups methodology was used to capture the voices and perspectives of fathers regarding the benefits and barriers to their participation in BPT. The focus group interviews were conducted in both English and in Spanish, with three cohorts of male caregivers who were participants in HOT DOCS from 2006 to 2008. An analysis of their responses coded from transcripts of the focus groups identified five major themes, which are discussed as (a) motivational factors for joining BPT, (b) fathers' experiences with BPT, (c) barriers regarding fathers' participation, (d) changes in parenting as a result of BPT, and (e) perceived changes in children's behavior as a result of BPT. In addition, recommendations for improvement of BPT are presented. This research may be helpful in improving efforts to engage male caregivers in BPT and thereby reduce children's challenging behavior problems and improve program outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)304-311
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Pediatric Nursing
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Fathers
  • Focus groups
  • Involvement
  • Parent training

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics

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