FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents

About This Program

Target Population: Prospective foster, adoptive, and kinship parents of children in all age groups

For parents/caregivers of children ages: 0 – 18

Program Overview

Using an online curriculum from FosterParentCollege.com (FPC) and an in-class curriculum from the Institute for Human Services (IHS), the FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents combines four in-person classroom sessions with ten online training courses to be viewed independently by potential resource parents. The four classroom sessions are used to provide local/state training requirements and allow for mutual assessment by the agency and the prospective resource parent. The ten online, highly interactive courses are gathered into three clusters covering core resource parent training topics:

  • Cluster One: The Child Welfare Team, Child Abuse and Neglect, Parent-Child Attachment, and Understanding Behavior in Foster Children
  • Cluster Two: Child Development, Cultural Issues in Parenting, and Working Together with Primary Families
  • Cluster Three: Caring for Children Who Have Been Sexually Abused, Reducing Family Stress, and Foster Care to Adoption

Agencies have the flexibility to reorganize and modify clusters and to modify the written curriculum for the classroom sessions to meet local/state requirements.

Program Goals

The goals of FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents are:

  • Enable resource parents to assess whether they have the willingness, ability, and resources to parent children in care
  • Learn parenting attitudes and skills that improve the safety of children in care and create a positive family environment
  • Learn about how abuse and neglect affect children’s behavior and how to manage those behaviors, thus reducing the placement disruption rate

Essential Components

The essential components of FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents include:

  • In-person group meetings for resource parents:
    • Less in-person meeting time is required with the Blended Curriculum than traditional resource parent training programs because core material is covered by the online courses.
    • The curriculum is designed for classes of 20-25 participants, but it may be used with groups ranging in size from 6-36.
    • The flexible classroom curriculum can be modified by states and agencies to present current local requirements.
    • Trainees have a chance to ask questions, receive agency-specific information, and interact with agency staff and other prospective caregivers.
    • Agency staff have an opportunity to assess prospective caregivers, while trainees can assess the agency program and their own willingness and ability to assume the role of resource parent.
    • FPC provides at no cost a 198-page written curriculum manual that provides trainer instructions and content for four 3-hour in-person training sessions (although the curriculum can be easily customized to meet an agency’s particular needs, e.g., by adding state- and/or agency-specific information). The manual includes suggested group activities, discussion points, printable handouts, syllabi and review questionnaires for the ten online courses, an evaluation form, and editable PowerPoint presentations.
  • Online courses:
    • The FPC online courses of the Blended Curriculum are viewed through the internet by prospective resource parents at times and places convenient for them.
    • FPC pre-service courses, which deliver core resource parent training information, are self-paced, interactive, and engaging, using the audiovisual, multimedia learning format used in FosterParentCollege.com courses.
    • FPC courses provide fidelity in training and are periodically updated.
    • The courses provide recaps of key information, including a viewer guide and a review questionnaire with interactive responses.
    • All courses include supplementary printable handouts that are periodically reviewed and updated as needed.
    • Viewers of the online courses have access to a personal notebook and have the ability to paste or write directly from the training to the notebook.
    • Each online course provides a certificate of completion that parents can present to their agency for training credit.
  • Curriculum Guide (Implementation Manual) for in-person meetings:
    • FPC provides a printable, flexible curriculum guide designed for customizing by agency staff to include state- and agency-specific requirements.

Program Delivery

Parent/Caregiver Services

FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents directly provides services to parents/caregivers and addresses the following:

  • New or potential resource (kinship, foster, etc.) and adoptive parents of children who have been abused, neglected, or otherwise traumatized and may have disruptive behavior problems and/or emotional disorders related to being separated from their birth family members and placed in care

Recommended Intensity:

The online courses are delivered in clusters and assigned by the trainer to be viewed between the in-person classroom meetings. Delivery of the in-person curriculum is flexible and can be tailored to the needs of both agencies and prospective caregivers. Each in-person classroom meeting runs about 3 hours and will occur every week or every other week. Each cluster of online courses provides both training content and interactive exercises and will take a trainee approximately 3 to 4.5 hours to complete and should be completed between in-person meetings.

Recommended Duration:

Typically 4-8 weeks

Delivery Settings

This program is typically conducted in a(n):

  • Adoptive Home
  • Foster / Kinship Care
  • Community-based Agency / Organization / Provider


FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents includes a homework component:

Participants in the FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents are expected to complete the online interactive exercises and read the printable handouts that are part of the curriculum's online courses. In addition, the in-person sessions involve homework activities that participants are required to complete and handouts they are expected to read.


FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents has materials available in a language other than English:


For information on which materials are available in this language, please check on the program's website or contact the program representative (contact information is listed at the bottom of this page).

Resources Needed to Run Program

The typical resources for implementing the program are:

  • For the classroom, agencies need:
    • A room large enough to accommodate the group of prospective resource parents (typically anywhere from 6-36)
    • A laptop, projector, and screen for the PowerPoint presentations
    • A flip chart and markers
    • Props as described in the curriculum guide
    • An experienced social worker from the licensing agency to present information related to agency rules, policies, and procedures, as well as to review the online courses with trainees
    • Ideally, an experienced resource parent to co-train the meetings with the social worker and share experiences and insights from years of providing for children in care.
  • For the online courses, individual trainees need:
    • Access to a computer with a compatible browser, a high-speed internet connection, and audio speakers.

Education and Training

Prerequisite/Minimum Provider Qualifications

The agency trainer for the in-person classes should be of a senior grade and have presentation skills; have training and/or experience in social work or counseling with foster, adoptive, and kinship families; and be familiar with state- and agency-specific requirements for resource parents. Group instructional skills are desirable.

Education and Training Resources

There is a manual that describes how to deliver this program; but there is not training available for this program.

Implementation Information

Pre-Implementation Materials

There are no pre-implementation materials to measure organizational or provider readiness for FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents.

Formal Support for Implementation

There is formal support available for implementation of FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents as listed below:

During and after implementation, FPC staff will provide training and technical assistance related to the online management system, as well as individualized customer service by phone or webinar as needed.

Fidelity Measures

There are no fidelity measures for FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents.

Implementation Guides or Manuals

There are implementation guides or manuals for FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents as listed below:

There is a manual (or curriculum guide) that describes how to implement the FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents, with material covering the four in-person training sessions and the ten online training courses.

The manual is publicly available and can be obtained by emailing FPC_Staff@northwestmedia.com or calling 541-343-6636 or 800-777-6636.

Research on How to Implement the Program

Research has not been conducted on how to implement FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents.

Relevant Published, Peer-Reviewed Research

Child Welfare Outcome: Child/Family Well-Being

White, L., Delaney, R., Pacifici, C., Nelson, C., Whitkin, J., Lovejoy, M., & Smalley, B. K. (2016). Efficacy of blended preservice training for resource parents. Child Welfare, 93(6), 45-72.

Type of Study: Pretest-posttest with comparison group
Number of Participants: 111


  • Age — Mean=40.2 years
  • Race/Ethnicity — 85% White, 5% Black/African American, 2% American Indian/Alaska Native, 7% Biracial, and 2% Other/unknown
  • Gender — 62% Female
  • Status — Participants were prospective resource (foster, adoptive, and kinship) parents.

Location/Institution: Portland, Oregon

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study compared the efficacy of the Blended Preservice Training curriculum [now called FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents] to a traditional classroom-only curriculum. Measures utilized include questionnaires on parent knowledge of material covered in the training and parent awareness of parenting issues. Results showed the blended approach produced dramatically lower dropout rates during preservice training. Both groups made significant gains in parenting awareness from pretest to posttest, but those gains were greater for the classroom-only approach. Limitations include lack of randomization, small sample size, and length of follow-up.

Length of postintervention follow-up: 3 months.

The following studies were not included in rating FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training for Resource Parents on the Scientific Rating Scale...

Delaney, R., Nelson, C., Pacifici, C., White, L., & Smalley, B. K. (2012). Web-enhanced preservice training for prospective resource parents: A randomized trial of effectiveness and user satisfaction. Journal of Social Service Research, 38, 503-514. doi:10.1080/01488376.2012.696416

Note: This study is not used for rating since it does not evaluate outcomes on the whole FPC-IHS Blended In-Person and Online Pre-Service Training model. This study compared the efficacy of the online portion of the curriculum to a traditional classroom-only curriculum. Participants were randomly assigned to a treatment group that viewed an online version of the class on child abuse and neglect or to a comparison group that took the same class in person. Measures utilized include Background Information, Knowledge of Child Abuse and Neglect (KCAN), the User Satisfaction Questionnaire, and the Empathy & Perspective Questionnaire. Results showed the online training was more effective than the live training at increasing knowledge. Findings on empathy were not significant but trended toward greater empathy for the online group and feedback indicated high satisfaction with the online course. Limitations include small sample size, reliance on self-reported measures, and lack of follow-up.

Additional References

Kaasbøll, J., Lassemo, E., Paulsen, V., Melby, L., & Ose, S. (2019). Foster parents' needs, perceptions and satisfaction with foster parent training: A systematic literature review. Children and Youth Services Review, 101, 33-41.

Cooley, M. E., Newquist, J., Thompson, H. M., & Colvin, M. L. (2019). A systematic review of foster parent preservice training. Children and Youth Services Review, 107, 1-17.

Contact Information

Lee White, BA
Agency/Affiliation: CEO & President, Northwest Media, Inc.
Website: www.northwestmedia.com & www.fosterparentcollege.com
Phone: (541) 343-6636 x102

Date Research Evidence Last Reviewed by CEBC: September 2017

Date Program Content Last Reviewed by Program Staff: July 2020

Date Program Originally Loaded onto CEBC: May 2018