Stages of change, coparenting patterns, and post-divorce parent education programming : a pre-program assessment
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[ACCESS RESTRICTED TO THE UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI AT REQUEST OF AUTHOR.] Given concerns about the effect of divorce and interparental conflict on children, many judges now require divorcing/legally separating parents with children under age 18 to attend parent education programs (PEPs). In general, evaluations of these programs have shown their effectiveness. Evaluation studies of PEPs, however, have often not been rigorous. Despite the fact that researchers and practitioners acknowledge that individuals display markedly different patterns of coparenting following divorce and that not all program participants are amenable to making changes in their coparental relationship, researchers have not empirically assessed participants' coparenting patterns or stage of change prior to participation in PEP . Using latent class analysis of survey data from participants in a PEP class, this dissertation provides an initial evaluation of participants coparenting patterns and stage of change prior to participating in PEP and considers how demographic factors are related to both coparenting pattern and stage of change. The association between coparenting pattern and stage of change is also evaluated. Results from this evaluation suggest a need for a more tailored approach to parent education programming and have broader implications for family life education and relationships research.
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