This experiment is part of the Adolescence Challenge Grant. Browse more projects

Helping parents and their teens talk about romantic and sexual relationships

Raised of $2,000 Goal
Ended on 1/20/17
Campaign Ended
  • $895
  • 45%
  • Finished
    on 1/20/17



Over the past three years, we have gathered narratives from our conversations with 108 young people. We will use these narratives to create eight discussion prompts that we will pilot test with 10 parent-teen dyads. Professionally-designed materials will emphasize topics such as virginity, romantic and sexual relationships, and dating violence. 

For this project, we anticipate designing and printing these prompts as 8 1/2" x 11" glossy cards.  The cards will include a short narrative from an actual teen and a series of questions that are designed to facilitate parent-teen conversation.  The back of the card will include tips about how to improve parent-teen communication around romantic relationships.  

Ten parents and their teenage children will be asked to visit our lab.  Together, each parent and teen will choose one of the eight discussion prompts.  The parent and teen will then be given 15 to 20 minutes to separately read through the prompt in a comfortable setting.  They will then be asked to enter our main lab space that has been designed to look like a living room.  The parent and teen will then be asked to talk about the prompt for ten to fifteen minutes.  We will audio and video record their conversation.  After the conversation, we will conduct a 20 to 30 minute interview with each participant separately to identify potential revisions to the prompt and to discuss parent-child communication about romantic relationships.     

Pre Analysis Plan

We will quantitatively code the videos of the parent-teen conversations using Mangold Observational Research Software.  We will code within 30 second blocks for verbal and non-verbal responses that reflect positive, negative, and neutral parent communication (i.e. communication that supports, negates or is neutral to the content).  In addition, we will code for conversational dominance, autonomy supportive parenting behaviors, and for clarity of communication and receptiveness to the other's ideas.  We have used this procedure before in an observational study of 50 parent-teen dyads.  Parents and teens discussed relationship and relationship violence prompted by content in music videos viewed in our lab. 

Both the parent-teen conversation and the in-depth interviews will be transcribed by the research assistant and volunteers.  This data will be qualitatively analyzed using MAXQDA Qualitative Analysis Software to identify common ways parents and teens used and discussed the prompts.  We will also code this data to identify necessary revisions to the prevention program materials. We have used this procedure for multiple studies including a qualitative analysis of focus groups with 108 young people and a qualitative analysis of parent-teen discussions. 


This project has not yet shared any protocols.