Mar 06, 2009


The Parent-Targeted Intervention for Adolescent Substance Use Prevention (PTI)
is a prevention program that seeks to reduce tobacco and alcohol use in
adolescents. This three- to four-session program is designed to increase drug
refusal skills, peer friendships, and parent-child involvement. Study findings
at posttest and follow-up found no impacts on parenting behaviors, the onset of
alcohol and/or tobacco use, or on children’s reports of parenting behaviors.


Target population: Children and adolescents in the fifth and seventh

The Parent-Targeted Intervention for Adolescent Substance Use Prevention (PTI)
includes three sessions for parents of fifth graders and four sessions for
parents of seventh graders. The first session involves a group session with
parents, their children, and their children’s friends. The goal of the first
session is to familiarize themselves with their children’s friends. Parents
receive workbooks listing activities and suggestions for keeping their children
away from drugs. Parents also received a list of their children’s friends
(“friendship circles”). In Session 2, parents meet with the parents of their
children’s friends. A facilitator discuss ways to handle manipulation strategies
they may encounter from their children and are taught how to enforce rules and
engage in effective parenting practices. In Session 3, Parents meet again in
their friendship circles and discuss issues related to alcohol use and ways to
curtail unsupervised use.


Study 1: Cohen,
D.A., & Rice, J. C. (1995). A Parent-Targeted Intervention for Adolescent
Substance Use Prevention: Lessons Learned. Evaluation Review, 19(2), 159-180.

Evaluated Population:1,034 fifth
and seventh graders attending 17 schools participated in this study. The ethnic
composition of the sample was 38 percent European American, 32 percent
Mexican-American, 15 percent Asian American, 4 percent African American, and 11
percent other/unknown.

Approach: Schools were randomly
assigned to control or experimental groups, after stratifying by ethnic mix,
socioeconomic status, and achievement scores.At baseline,
posttest, and for at least two follow-ups, child reports of tobacco, alcohol,
and other drug use, as well as information about adolescents’ relationships with
their parents, were obtained. In addition, parents completed surveys focused on
their parenting behaviors (i.e., monitoring, positive reinforcement, consistent
discipline, and knowledge of child’s activities, whereabouts, and friends).
Parents also answered questions about their children’s peers’ drug use and about
their children’s risk taking behaviors.

Results: There were no differences in the rates of tobacco or alcohol use initiation
between intervention and control conditions in either the fifth-grade or
seventh-grade cohorts. In addition, the program did not impact children’s
reports of parenting behaviors (e.g., monitoring, rapport, and respect). The low
level of parent participation obtained in this study (Cohort 1: 52 out of 941
parents attended at least one session; Cohort 2: 96 out of 1,127 parents
attended at least one session); should be considered when evaluating these



Cohen, D.A., & Rice, J. C. (1995). A Parent-Targeted
Intervention for Adolescent Substance Use Prevention: Lessons Learned.
Evaluation Review, 19(2), 159-180.

Contact Information:

Deborah A. Cohen, MD, MPH

Louisiana St. University Medical

1542 Tulane Ave

New Orleans, LA 70112

KEYWORDS: Middle Childhood (6-11), Elementary, Co-ed, White or
Caucasian, Hispanic or Latino, Asian, Substance Use, Alcohol Use, Tobacco Use,
Parent Training, Prevention.

Program information last updated on 3/6/09.

Subscribe to Child Trends

Short weekly updates of recent research on children and youth.