An empirically derived description of self-efficacy and empowerment for parents of children identified as psychologically disordered

Michael J. Scheel, Traci Rieckmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

65 Scopus citations


Parents of clinic-referred preschool children are particularly vulnerable to less self-efficacious judgments of their ability to effectively parent their child. It is vital that these parents demonstrate empowerment through proactive involvement in treatment. Descriptions of parent self-efficacy and empowerment that could aid counseling agency facilitation of these qualities in parents are lacking. This study pursued an empirically derived description of parent self-efficacy and parent empowerment specific to the context of clinic-referred preschool children. Parent internal perceptions of stress, family functioning, stress due to child condition, and extrafamilial influences were considered in separate predictive models of parent self-efficacy and parent empowerment. Stepwise regression revealed parent stress and family functioning as significant predictors of parent self-efficacy, while a broader range of variables that also included parent employment and education constituted the parent empowerment model. These findings support a multiple-level perspective of empowerment that includes self-efficacy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)15-27
Number of pages13
JournalAmerican Journal of Family Therapy
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1998


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology

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