Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14)

About This Program

Target Population: A universal program for families and youth ages 10-14

For children/adolescents ages: 10 – 14

For parents/caregivers of children ages: 10 – 14

Program Overview

The Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14) is delivered in seven parent, youth, and family sessions using narrated videos portraying typical youth and parent situations with diverse families. The program is taught with 7-10 families over seven weeks for two hours each session. Parents and youth meet in separate groups for the first hour and together as families during the second hour to practice skills, play games, and do family projects. Sessions are highly interactive and include role-playing, discussions, learning games, and family projects.

This curriculum addresses youth risk such as: aggressive or withdrawn behavior, negative peer influence, poor school performance, lack of prosocial goals, and poor relationship with parents. Protective factors addressed include: positive future goals, peer pressure resistance skills, prosocial peer relationships, positive management of emotions, and empathy with parents.

Program Goals

The goals of Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14) are:

  • Youth goals:
    • Decrease alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana use
    • Decrease conduct problems in school
    • Increase appreciation for parents/caregivers
    • Increase skills in dealing with stress and peer pressure
  • Parent/Caregiver goals:
    • Increase parenting skills such as setting appropriate limits and building a positive relationship with their youth
    • Increase in positive feelings towards their child
    • Increase general child management including setting rules and following through with consequences
    • Increase skills in general child management such as effectively monitoring youth and having appropriate and consistent discipline

Essential Components

The essential components of Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14) include:

  • Family-based: Parents/caregivers and youth in the program together
  • Culturally Sensitive: Designed for use with all families. Cultural adaptations have been made for different cultures with input from stakeholders and curriculum developers
  • Group-based: Designed for 7-10 families per group with recommended minimum of 5 families to successfully facilitate group discussions and activities
  • Caregiver and Youth Sessions: During the 1st hour each week, youth and caregiver sessions run separately but concurrently with activities, discussion, and active skill-building games
  • Family Sessions: Family sessions with all families together with activities designed for individual family units as well as large group activities
  • Interactive methods of content delivery: DVDs, group discussion, role-playing, and active games utilized to deliver the content
  • 3-person facilitator team: 1 facilitator for the caregiver group and 2 facilitators for the youth group; all 3 facilitators work together to lead the family session
  • Scripted: Each session has detailed instructions and assigned times for activities to ensure that facilitators follow the curriculum as intended to achieve the proven outcomes of the program.
  • Facilitator Training: Covers all program activities as well as provides an opportunity for facilitators to practice delivering specific content; also covers research behind the program, logistical information, how to conduct fidelity observations, and evaluation protocols.
  • Creed and Closing Circle: Each individual session (Youth, Caregivers, and Family) concludes with the group members summarizing what they learned from their family members during the session and reciting a Creed to remind them of the main objective of the entire program.
  • Strengths-based: SFP 10-14 presents different strategies to caregivers and youth and facilitates discussion about the pros and cons of the strategy
  • Empathy-building: Activities help caregivers and youth understand things from each other’s perspective and build empathy for each other

Program Delivery

Child/Adolescent Services

Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14) directly provides services to children/adolescents and addresses the following:

  • Aggressive or withdrawn behavior, negative peer influence, poor school performance, lack of prosocial goals, poor relationship with parents

Parent/Caregiver Services

Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14) directly provides services to parents/caregivers and addresses the following:

  • Demanding and rejecting behavior, poor child management, harsh and inappropriate discipline, poor communication of family rules

Recommended Intensity:

2-hour weekly sessions

Recommended Duration:

7 weeks

Delivery Settings

This program is typically conducted in a(n):

  • Community Daily Living Setting
  • Community-based Agency / Organization / Provider
  • School Setting (Including: Day Care, Day Treatment Programs, etc.)

Homework

Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14) includes a homework component:

Families practice the tools given to them for the time between sessions.

Languages

Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14) has materials available in a language other than English:

Spanish

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:

  • Three trained staff to deliver the program
  • Two rooms, one large enough to do activities, both with some tables or desks
  • Either a TV/DVD player, or way to project a DVD
  • Easel pad and paper
  • Supplies as listed in the manual for the sessions

Education and Training

Prerequisite/Minimum Provider Qualifications

Facilitators do not need a particular educational level. Facilitators who are good communicators and have experience working with youth, adults, or families are best. Training by an approved SFP 10-14 Master Trainer is required in order to be a facilitator.

Education and Training Resources

There is a manual that describes how to deliver this program, and there is training available for this program.

The manual can be ordered through the online store (https://store.extension.iastate.edu/Product/SF2) after a training of facilitators is set up.

Training Contact:
Training is obtained:

Training can be onsite or teams of 3 facilitators can travel to other locations.

Number of days/hours:

Three days for a total of 21 hours

Implementation Information

Pre-Implementation Materials

There are no pre-implementation materials to measure organizational or provider readiness for Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14).

Formal Support for Implementation

There is formal support available for implementation of Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14) as listed below:

Free technical assistance from Iowa State University is available for the lifetime of any site’s usage of the program. Any site using the SFP 10-14 retrospective pre–post survey will receive free data entry services for the survey.

Fidelity Measures

There are fidelity measures for Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14) as listed below:

Fidelity forms are available for sessions 2–6 in the parent, youth, and family sessions. Training on the use of the forms occurs during the 21-hour facilitator training. Trained observers will do the fidelity assessments during the regular 3-day training. Fidelity observations are usually completed by agency staff and not the facilitators leading the sessions. There are also process forms for facilitators and parents that are available for use. Further information is available on the website: http://www.extension.iastate.edu/sfp10-14/content/fidelity-evaluation

Implementation Guides or Manuals

There are implementation guides or manuals for Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14) as listed below:

A short implementation guide and timeline is included in the curriculum manual. Additional resources for each step of the implementation and preparation are on the SFP 10-14 website: www.extension.iastate.edu/sfp10-14

Implementation Cost

There have been studies of the costs of implementing Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14) which are listed below:

Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency. (2019). Cost-benefit analysis for PCCD’s evidence-based initiatives – Full report: Investing in effective programs to improve lives and save tax payer dollars. http://www.episcenter.psu.edu/sites/default/files/outreach/Cost-Benefit_Analysis_for_PCCDs_Evidence-based_Initiatives_FULL-Report_5-28-19.pdf

Spoth, R. L., Guyll, M., & Day, S. X. (2002). Universal family-focused interventions in alcohol-use disorder prevention: Cost-effectiveness and cost-benefit analyses of two interventions. Journal of Studies on Alcohol, 63(2), 219–228. https://doi.org/10.15288/jsa.2002.63.219

Research on How to Implement the Program

Research has not been conducted on how to implement Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14).

Relevant Published, Peer-Reviewed Research

Child Welfare Outcome: Child/Family Well-Being

The CEBC reviews all of the articles that have been published in peer-reviewed journals as part of the rating process. When there are more than 10 published, peer-reviewed articles, the CEBC identifies the most relevant articles, with a focus on randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and controlled studies that have an impact on the rating. The articles chosen for Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14) are summarized below:

Spoth, R., Redmond, C., & Lepper, H. (1999). Alcohol initiation outcomes of universal family-focused preventive interventions: One- and two-year follow-ups of a controlled study. Journal of Studies on Alcohol, s13, 103–111. https://doi.org/10.15288/jsas.1999.s13.103

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 446 families

Population:

  • Age — Children: 10–13 years, Parents: Mean=37.3–40.1 years
  • Race/Ethnicity — Children: Not specified; Parents: 99% Caucasian
  • Gender — Children: 55% Female, Parents: Not specified
  • Status — Participants were 6th graders and their families.

Location/Institution: 22 rural schools in a Midwestern state

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This article evaluated the long-term effects of the Iowa Strengthening Families Program (ISFP) [now called Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14)] on alcohol initiation. Participants were randomized into an ISFP or control group. Measures utilized included the Alcohol Initiation Index (AII). Results indicated all scores were significantly lower among ISFP adolescents than among control group adolescents at 1- and 2-year follow-up assessments. Relative-reduction rate differences between intervention and control groups on specific alcohol initiation behaviors(e .g., onset of drinking without parental permission, onset of drunkenness) ranged from approximately 30% to 60%. Dosage-related initiation differences were evident only at the 1-year follow-up. Limitations include reliance on self-report measures, small sample size in the high-risk group, and generalizability of results to nonrural and more ethnically diverse populations.

Length of postintervention follow-up: 1 and 2 years.

Spoth, R., Reyes, M. L., Redmond, C., & Shin, C. (1999). Assessing a public health approach to delay onset and progression of adolescent substance use: Latent transition and loglinear analyses of longitudinal family preventive intervention outcomes. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 67(5), 619–630. https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-006X.67.5.619

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 329 families

Population:

  • Age — Children: 10–13 years; Parents: Mean=37.0–39.5 years
  • Race/Ethnicity — Children: Not specified; Parents: 99% Caucasian
  • Gender — Children: 54% Female; Parents: Not specified
  • Status — Participants were 6th graders and their families.

Location/Institution: 33 rural schools in a Midwestern state

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study uses the same sample as Spoth et al. (1999).This study evaluated the effects of the Iowa Strengthening Families Program (ISFP) [now called Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14)] and the Preparing for the Drug-Free Years Program (PDFY) on young adolescent transitions from nonuse substances to initiation and progression of substance use. Participants were randomized into PDFY, ISFP, or control group. Measures utilized included the Iowa Department of Education survey. Results indicated positive intervention results for both ISFP and PDFY. Although substance use rates increased among all groups over the course of the study, the likelihood of substance use initiation at the 2-year follow-up was significantly lower among ISFP adolescents. Both ISFP and PDFY showed significantly lower probabilities of transitions from the no-use status to a use status for the 1-year follow-up to 2-year follow-up period. Limitations include reliance on self-report measures, small sample size in the high-risk group, and generalizability of results to nonrural and more ethnically diverse populations.

Length of postintervention follow-up: 1 and 2 years.

Spoth, R. L., Redmond, C., & Shin, C. (2001). Randomized trial of brief family interventions for general populations: adolescent substance use outcomes 4 years following baseline. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 69(2), 627–642. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.childyouth.2012.11.008

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 446 families

Population:

  • Age — Children: 10–13 years; Parents: Mean=37.3–40.1 years
  • Race/Ethnicity — Children: Not specified; Parents: 99% Caucasian
  • Gender — Children: 55% Female; Parents: Not specified
  • Status — Participants were 6th graders and their families.

Location/Institution: 33 rural schools in a Midwestern state

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study uses the same sample as Spoth, Redmond, et al. (1999).This study evaluates the effects of the Iowa Strengthening Families Program (ISFP) [now called Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14)] on adolescents’ exposure to opportunities for substance use and on illicit substance use in the long term. Public schools (N=22) were randomly assigned to ISFP, the Preparing for the Drug Free Years program (PDFY), or a control condition. Measures utilized include self-report of lifetime and current substance use and frequency of use. Results indicated both PDFY and ISFP showed differences in delayed initiation, current use, and composite use of substances at a point when students are in high-risk years for substance-related problem behaviors. More specifically, mean substance use rates among ISFP adolescents were in the range of one quarter to one third of a standard deviation lower than those of the normal population control group. Limitations include reliance on self-report measures, data from PDFY was omitted, and generalizability of results to nonrural and more ethnically diverse populations.

Length of postintervention follow-up: Approximately 3 years.

Spoth, R. L., Redmond, C., Trudeau, L., & Shin, C. (2002). Longitudinal substance initiation outcomes for a universal preventive intervention combining family and school programs. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 2, 129–134. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.childyouth.2012.11.008

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 2127 families

Population:

  • Age — 7th grade at baseline
  • Race/Ethnicity — 96% White
  • Gender — 53% Male
  • Status — Participants were 7th grade students.

Location/Institution: 33 rural schools in 22 contiguous counties in a Midwestern state

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study evaluated the substance initiation effects of an intervention combining family and school-based competency-training intervention components. Schools were assigned to the school-based Life Skills Training (LST) plus Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14; LST + SFP 10–14), LST-only, or a control condition. Measures utilized included the Substance Initiation Index (SII), self-reported lifetime use of alcohol, cigarettes, and marijuana. Results indicated significant effects for both the LST + SFP 10–14 and LST-only interventions on the SII and on marijuana initiation. Relative reduction rates for alcohol initiation were 30.0% for the LST + SFP 10–14 intervention and 4.1% for LST only. Limitations include inability to determine the separate effect of each intervention, generalize to nonrural populations, rural populations in other regions of the country, or populations with different ethnic compositions, missing data, and reliance on self-reported measures.

Length of postintervention follow-up: 1 year.

Spoth, R., Redmond, C., Shin, C., & Azevedo, K. (2004). Brief family intervention effects on adolescent substance initiation: School-level growth curve analyses 6 years following baseline. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 72(3), 535–542. https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-006X.72.3.535

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 667 parent-youth dyads

Population:

  • Age — Children: Mean=11.8 years (baseline), Mean=18.2 years (follow-up); Parents: Not specified
  • Race/Ethnicity — Children: Not specified; Parents: Not specified
  • Gender — Children: Not specified; Parents: Not specified
  • Status — Participants were parents and their 6th grade children.

Location/Institution: 33 rural schools in 22 contiguous counties in a Midwestern state

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study uses samples from Spoth, et al. (1999) and Spoth, Redmond, el al. (2001). This study evaluates the effects of Iowa Strengthening Families Program (ISFP) [now called Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14) and Preparing for the Drug Free Years Program (PDFY) on the trajectories of substance initiation over a period of 6 years following a baseline assessment. Thirty-three rural public schools were randomly assigned to the ISFP, the PDFY, or a minimal-contact control condition. Measures utilized included the Alcohol Composite Use Index (ACUI). Results indicated that the ISFP and control groups showed significant condition differences in the rates of growth for three of the seven substance use outcomes examined. For lifetime use of alcohol, lifetime cigarette use, and lifetime use of marijuana, significant negative values indicate slower overall growth in substance use among ISFP-condition adolescents relative to controls. The results also showed that both family-focused interventions slowed the growth in initiation of some substances over a 6-year period following the baseline assessment, during which the mean age of participants increased from 11.8 years to 18.2 years. Limitations include reliance on self-report data of substance use, the degree to which the study findings generalize to more diverse or urban populations is unclear, and high attrition rate.

Length of postintervention follow-up: 6 years.

Spoth, R., Randall, G. K., Shin, C., & Redmond, C. (2005). Randomized study of combined universal family and school preventive interventions: Patterns of long-term effects on initiation, regular use, and weekly drunkenness. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors, 19(4), 372 –381. https://doi.org/10.1037/0893-164X.19.4.372

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 1,650 parent-youth dyads

Population:

  • Age — 7th grade at baseline; Parents: Not specified
  • Race/Ethnicity — Children: Not specified; Parents: Not specified
  • Gender — Children: Not specified; Parents: Not specified
  • Status — Participants were parents and their 7th grade children.

Location/Institution: 36 rural schools in 22 contiguous counties in a Midwestern state

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study also uses samples from Spoth, Redmond, et al. (1999) and Spoth, Redmond, et al. (2001). This study reports findings on the Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14), and Life Skills Training (LST) from an in-school assessment 2.5 years past baseline, as a follow-up to an earlier study of substance initiation. Thirty-six rural schools were randomly assigned to (a) LST + SFP 10–14, (b) LST, or (c) a control condition. Measures utilized include the Regular Alcohol Use (RAU). Results indicated that the earlier significant outcome on a substance initiation index was replicated, and positive point-in-time results for weekly drunkenness were observed, but there were no statistically significant outcomes for regular alcohol use. Limitations include generalizability due to population sample and reliance on self-reported measures.

Length of postintervention follow-up: Unclear

Spoth, R., Clair, S., Shin, C., & Redmond, C. (2006). Long-term effects of universal preventive interventions on methamphetamine use among adolescents. Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, 160(9), 876–882. https://doi.org/10.1001/archpedi.160.9.876

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 667 (Study 1); 2127 (Study 2)

Population:

  • Age — 6th grade at baseline (Study 1); 7th grade at baseline (Study 2)
  • Race/Ethnicity — 98% White (Study 1); 99% White (Study 2)
  • Gender — Not specified
  • Status — Participants were 6th grade students (Study 1) or 7th grade students (Study 2) at study enrollment.

Location/Institution: Rural schools in a Midwestern state

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
The purpose of this study is to examine the long-term effects of universal preventive interventions on methamphetamine use by adolescents in the general population during their late high school years. For Study 1: Schools were randomly assigned to either a minimal contact control group or 1 of 2 experimental groups: Iowa Strengthening Families Program (ISFP) [now called Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14) or the 5-session Preparing for the Drug Free Years (PDFY). For Study 2: 3 schools in each block were randomly assigned to the 3 experimental groups: the SFP 10-14 combined with the Life Skills Training (LST) program (SFP 10-14+ LST), the LST only, or a minimal-contact control group. Measures utilized include self reports of lifetime and past-year prescription drug misuse. Results indicate that, in Study 1, the ISFP past-year rate was significantly lower than the control group. In Study 2, SFP 10-14 + LST showed significant effects on lifetime and past-year use at the 4½ year follow-up; both SFP 10-14 + LST and LST alone had significant lifetime use effects at the 5½ year follow-up. Limitations include generalizeability to nonrural populations, rural populations in other regions of the country, or populations with different ethnic compositions; the lack of an SFP 10-14 only group, and the limited numbers of methamphetamine users in the sample, which affected the analyses that were possible.

Length of postintervention follow-up: Approximately 5 years.

Trudeau, L., Spoth, R., Randall, G. K., & Azevedo, K. (2007). Longitudinal effects of a universal family-focused intervention on growth patterns of adolescent internalizing symptoms and polysubstance use: Gender comparisons. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 36, 725–740. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10964-007-9179-1

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 383 families

Population:

  • Age — Children: 6th grade at baseline; Parents: Mean=37.7–40.2 years
  • Race/Ethnicity — Children: Not specified; Parents: 98.8% White
  • Gender — Children: 53.1% Female; Parents: Not specified
  • Status — Participants were parents and their 6th grade children.

Location/Institution: 22 rural schools in a Midwestern state

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study uses sample population from Spoth, Redmond, et al. (2005). This study evaluated the effects of the Iowa Strengthening Families Program (ISFP) [now called Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14)] on growth patterns of adolescent internalizing (anxiety and depressive symptoms) and monthly polysubstance use (alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, inhalants, and other illicit drugs), as well as the association between internalizing and polysubstance growth factors. Schools within blocks were randomly assigned to one of two experimental conditions: ISFP or a minimal-contact control condition. Measures utilized include the Child Behavior Checklist—Youth Self Report (CBCL-YSR) and self-report of past month substance use. Results indicated that compared to the control group, the IFSP adolescents showed a slower rate of increase in internalizing symptoms and polysubstance use. Intervention effects on internalizing symptoms were similar for boys and girls; however, girls demonstrated a higher overall level and a greater rate of increase across time. IFSP slowed the rate of increase in polysubstance use significantly more for girls than for boys, although overall levels of use were lower in the intervention group for both genders. Associations between internalizing and polysubstance use growth factors were found for girls, but not for boys, suggesting gender differences in psychosocial development. Limitations include reliance on self-report measures, generalizability of results to nonrural and more ethnically diverse populations, differences in the measurement recall timeframes, and that the sample size precluded some analyses.

Length of postintervention follow-up: Approximately 6 years.

Spoth, R. L., Randall, G. K., Trudeau, L., Shin, C., & Redmond, C. (2008). Substance use outcomes 5½ years past baseline for partnership-based, family-school preventive interventions. Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 96(1-2), 57-68. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2008.01.023

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 1,677

Population:

  • Age — 7th grade at baseline
  • Race/Ethnicity — 96% White
  • Gender — 53% Male
  • Status — Participants were 7th grade students.

Location/Institution: 36 rural schools in 22 contiguous counties in a Midwestern state

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study uses a sample from Spoth, Redmond, et al. (2005). This study reports adolescent substance use outcomes of universal family and school preventive interventions 5½ years past baseline. Thirty-six rural schools were randomly assigned to (a) a classroom-based LST + Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14), (b) LST, or (c) a control condition. Self-reports were collected at baseline, 6 months later following the interventions, then yearly through the 12th grade. Measures included initiation—alcohol, cigarette, marijuana, and drunkenness, along with a Substance Initiation Index (SII)—and measures of more serious use—frequency of alcohol, cigarette, and marijuana use, drunkenness frequency, monthly poly-substance use, and advanced poly-substance use. Results showed that, for all substance initiation outcomes, one or both intervention groups showed significant positive point-in-time differences at 12th grade and/or significant growth trajectory outcomes when compared with the control group. Although no main effects for the more serious substance use outcomes were observed, a higher-risk subsample demonstrated significant positive 12th grade point-in-time and/or growth trajectory outcomes for one or both intervention groups on all measures. The observed pattern of results likely reflects a combination of predispositions of the higher-risk subsample, the timing of the interventions, and baseline differences between experimental conditions favoring the control group. Limitations include generalizability due to population sample and reliance on self-reported measures.

Length of postintervention follow-up: Approximately 5 years.

Spoth, R., Trudeau, L., Shin, C., & Redmond, C. (2008). Long-term effects of universal preventive interventions on prescription drug misuse. Addiction, 103(7), 1160–1168. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1360-0443.2008.02160.x

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 667 (Study 1); 2,127 (Study 2)

Population:

  • Age — 17-21 at follow-up
  • Race/Ethnicity — 98% White (Study 1); 99% White (Study 2)
  • Gender — Not specified
  • Status — Participants were 6th grade students (Study 1) or 7th grade students (Study 2) at study enrollment.

Location/Institution: Rural schools in a Midwestern state

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study includes a sample population from Spoth et al. (1999) and Spoth, Randall et al. (2005). This study examines the long-term effects of universal preventive interventions conducted during middle school on 17–21-year-olds’ prescription drug misuse. Two randomized controlled prevention trials were conducted in public schools in the rural Midwestern United States. In study 1, schools were assigned to the Iowa Strengthening Families Program (ISFP) [now called Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14)], Preparing for the Drug Free Years, or a control condition. In study 2, schools were assigned to the school-based Life Skills Training (LST) plus SFP 10–14 (LST + SFP 10–14), LST-only, or a control condition. Measures utilized include self-reports of lifetime and past-year prescription drug misuse. Results indicated that, in study 1, ISFP 12th-graders’ past year narcotic misuse was significantly less than controls, as were ISFP 21-year-olds’ life-time narcotic and barbiturate misuse rates. In study 2, LST + SFP 10–14 showed significant effects on life-time prescription drug misuse at the 11th-grade follow-up, while effects at the 12th-grade follow-up were marginally significant. Limitations include generalizability to nonrural populations, rural populations in other regions of the country, or populations with different ethnic compositions; limited numbers of methamphetamine users in the sample; and concerns regarding potential bias due to school effects.

Length of postintervention follow-up: Approximately 6 and 9 years.

Spoth, R. L., Trudeau, L., Guyll, M., Shin, C., & Redmond, C. (2009). Universal intervention effects on substance use among young adults mediated by delayed adolescent substance initiation. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 77(4), 620–632. https://doi.org/10.1037/a0016029

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 446 families

Population:

  • Age — Children: 10-13 years; Parents: Mean=37.3– 40.1 years
  • Race/Ethnicity — Children: Not specified; 99% Caucasian
  • Gender — Children: 55% Female; Parents: Not specified
  • Status — Participants were 6th graders and their families.

Location/Institution: 33 rural schools in a Midwestern state

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study uses the same sample as Spoth, Redmond, et al. (1999). This study examines whether delayed substance initiation during adolescence, achieved through Iowa Strengthening Families Program (ISFP) [now called Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14)] and Preparing for the Drug Free Years program (PDFY) conducted in middle school, can reduce problematic substance use during young adulthood. Schools within blocks were randomly assigned to three experimental conditions: those receiving the seven-session ISFP, the five-session PDFY, or a minimal-contact control condition. Measures utilized included the Rutgers Alcohol Problems Index as well as questionnaires regarding tobacco, and other illicit drug use. Results show that the models fit the data and that they were robust across outcomes and interventions, with more robust effects found for ISFP. The addition of direct intervention effects on young adult outcomes was not supported, suggesting long-term effects were primarily indirect. Relative reduction rates were calculated to quantify intervention-control differences on the estimated proportion of young adults indicating problematic substance use that was higher for ISFP than for PDFY. Limitations include reliance on self-report measures, attrition, and generalizability of results to nonrural and more ethnically diverse populations.

Length of postintervention follow-up: Approximately 10 years.

Spoth, R., Guyll, M., & Shin, C. (2009). Universal intervention as a protective shield against exposure to substance use: Long-term outcomes and public health significance. American Journal of Public Health, 99(11), 2026-2033. https://doi.org/10.2105/AJPH.2007.133298

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 446 families

Population:

  • Age — Children: 10-13 years; Parents: Mean=37.3–40.1 years
  • Race/Ethnicity — Children: Not specified; 99% Caucasian
  • Gender — Children: 55% Female; Parents: Not specified
  • Status — Participants were 6th graders and their families

Location/Institution: 22 rural schools in a Midwestern state

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study uses the same sample as Spoth, Redmond, et al. (1999). This study examines the effects of the Iowa Strengthening Families Program (ISFP) [now called Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14)] on adolescents’ exposure to opportunities for substance use and on illicit substance use in the long term. Public schools (N=22) were randomly assigned to the ISFP or a control condition. Measures utilized include the National Survey on Drug Use and Health. Results indicated ISFP was associated with reduced exposure to illicit substance use that was, in turn, associated with reduced 12th-grade substance use. The ISFP also reduced the rate of increase in exposure across adolescence, which was associated with the likelihood of 12th-grade illicit substance use, with a significant indirect effect. Limitations include reliance on self-report measures, data from PDFY was omitted, and generalizability of results to nonrural and more ethnically diverse populations.

Length of postintervention follow-up: Approximately 6 years.

Spoth, R., Trudeau, L., Shin, C., Ralston, E., Redmond, C., Greenberg, M., & Feinberg, M. (2013). Longitudinal effects of universal preventive intervention on prescription drug misuse: Three RCTs with late adolescents and young adults. American Journal of Public Health, 103(4), 665–672. https://doi.org/10.2105/AJPH.2012.301209

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 446 families (Study 1); Not specified (Study 2); Not specified (Study 3)

Population:

  • Age — Mean=11.32–11.34 years (Study 1); Mean=12.77–12.78 years (Study 2); Mean=11.82–11.85 years (Study 3)
  • Race/Ethnicity — 98% White (Study 1); Not specified for studies 2 and 3
  • Gender — 48% Male (Study 1); 53% Male (Study 2); 50% Male (Study 3)
  • Status — Participants were 6th or 7th grade students at baseline.

Location/Institution: Rural communities in the United States

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study includes a sample population from Spoth, Redmond, et al. (1999) and Spoth, Randall, et al. (2002). This study examined long-term prescription drug misuse outcomes in 3 randomized controlled trials evaluating brief universal preventive interventions conducted during middle school. In 3 studies the following interventions were tested: the Iowa Strengthening Families Program (ISFP) [now called Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14)]; a revised ISFP, the Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 plus the school-based Life Skills Training (SFP 10–14 + LST); and the SFP 10–14. Measures utilized include self-reported outcomes were prescription opioid misuse (POM) and lifetime prescription drug misuse overall (PDMO). Results indicate In study 1, ISFP showed significant effects on POM and PDMO, relative reduction rates (RRRs; age 25 years) of 65%, and comparable benefits for higher- and lower-risk subgroups. In study 2, SFP 10–14 + LST showed significant or marginally significant effects on POM and PDMO across all ages (21, 22, and 25 years); higher-risk participants showed stronger effects (RRRs =32%–79%). In study 3, significant results were found for POM and PDMO (12th grade RRRs = 20%–21%); higher-risk and lower-risk participants showed comparable outcomes. Limitations include findings may not generalize to populations with different geographic (e.g., suburban, urban) or ethnic compositions.

Length of postintervention follow-up: Study 1: age 25 (approx. 13 years). Studies 2 & 3: Not specified.

Spoth, R., Trudeau, L., Shin, C., Randall, G. K., & Mason, W. A. (2019). Testing a model of universal prevention effects on adolescent relationships and marijuana use as pathways to young adult outcomes. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 48(3), 444–458. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10964-018-0946-y

Type of Study: Randomized controlled trial
Number of Participants: 446 families

Population:

  • Age — Children: 10-13 years (Mean=11.3 years)
  • Race/Ethnicity — 98% Caucasian
  • Gender — 48% Male
  • Status — Participants were 6th graders and their families.

Location/Institution: 22 Iowa schools

Summary: (To include comparison groups, outcomes, measures, notable limitations)
This study uses a population from Spoth, Redmond, et al. (1999). This study used data from a randomized controlled trial to test a longitudinal, developmental model positing pathways of Iowa Strengthening Families Program (ISFP) [now called Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10–14 (SFP 10–14)] effects on age 21 illicit drug use and positive relationship affect, via earlier effects on adolescent relationships and marijuana use. Sixth-graders and their families were randomly assigned to the ISFP or a control group. Measures included the Positive Youth Development Student Questionnaire, Short version, the Job Satisfaction Survey, middle-school relationships (parents, peers, school), high school marijuana use, plus age 21 illicit drug use and relationship affect (parents, work, school), 10 years past intervention implementation. Results indicated intervention effects on young adult variables were indirect, through effects on adolescent outcomes, with higher-risk participants showing greater intervention impact. Limitations include reliance on self-report measures, small sample size in the high risk group, and generalizability of results to nonrural and more ethnically diverse populations.

Length of postintervention follow-up: Approximately 10 years.

Additional References

No reference materials are currently available for Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14).

Contact Information

Cathy Hockaday, PhD
Agency/Affiliation: Iowa State University
Website: www.extension.iastate.edu/sfp10-14
Email:
Phone: (515) 294-7601

Date Research Evidence Last Reviewed by CEBC: September 2019

Date Program Content Last Reviewed by Program Staff: July 2020

Date Program Originally Loaded onto CEBC: July 2020