Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

There is increasing interest about the fidelity with which interventions are implemented because it is theorized that better implementation fidelity by facilitators is associated with better participant outcomes. However, in the parenting program literature, there is mixed evidence on the relationship between implementation fidelity and outcomes. This paper provides a synthesis of the evidence on the relationship between facilitator delivery and outcomes in the parenting program literature. Following PRISMA guidelines, this paper synthesizes the results of a systematic review of studies on parenting programs aiming to reduce violence against children and child behavior problems. Specifically, it examines associations between observational measures of facilitator competent adherence and parent and child outcomes. A meta-analysis was not feasible due to study heterogeneity. As a result, Synthesis Without Meta-Analysis guidelines were followed. Searches in electronic databases, reference searching, forward citation tracking, and expert input identified 9653 articles. After screening using pre-specified criteria, 18 articles were included. The review found that most studies (n = 13) reported a statistically significant positive relationship with at least one parent or child outcome. However, eight studies reported inconsistent findings across outcomes, and four studies found no association with outcomes. The results suggest that better facilitator competent adherence is generally associated with positive parent and child outcomes. However, this finding is weakened by the methodological heterogeneity of included studies and due to the wide variety of ways in which studies conceptualized competent adherence-outcome relationships.

Original publication




Journal article


Prev Sci

Publication Date



Behavioral interventions, Fidelity, Parenting, Systematic review, Violence prevention