CFC's grant writing and research...

... continue to focus on understanding effective interventions to prevent child and adolescent antisocial behavior and substance use by increasing collaborations across disciplines and enhancing our knowledge of interactions between macro and micro systems that affect development, such as brain biology, self-regulation, and culture. We seek to continually refine this model during the coming years, including increasing our understanding of effective implementation and dissemination.

 

 


Current Projects

ANSRS

Attention, Self-Regulation, and Psychopathology
in Children and Young Adolescents (ANSRS)

Funding period: July 1, 2008–June 30, 2013
Principal Investigator: Dr. Kristina Racer
Funded by: National Institutes of Health

The ANSRS project is part of a program of research that seeks to identify barriers to self-regulation and develop methods to tailor intervention and prevention to individual self-regulatory strengths and weaknesses. The ANSRS project was designed to clarify the role of selective attention in the development of self-regulation and psychopathology.

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Child Maltreatment, Parenting Processes, and Emotion Regulation

Funding period: September 11, 2007–June 30, 2013
Current funding period: March 15, 2008–June 1, 2013
Principal Investigator, Child and Family Center: Dr. Elizabeth Skowron
Project Coordinator: Angie Morrison
Funded by: National Institute on Mental Health, National Institutes of Health and the Children’s Bureau of the Administration on Children, Youth and Families as part of the Federal Child Neglect Research Consortium

What are the mechanisms underlying early childhood deficits in self-regulation in child-maltreating families? Researchers are modeling patterns of interactive synchrony, rupture, and repair that unfold over time in the sequential interactions of maltreating and nonmaltreating mothers and their preschool children.

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Early Steps

Early Family-Centered Prevention of Drug Use Risk
Stage 1 funding period: September 30, 2002–August 31, 2007
Current funding period: March 15, 2008–June 1, 2013
Principal Investigator, Child and Family Center: Dr. Thomas Dishion
Principal Investigator, University of Pittsburgh: Dr. Daniel Shaw; co-PIs include Dr. Anne Gill.
Principal Investigator, University of Virginia: Dr. Melvin Wilson; co-PI Dr. Frances Gardner, Oxford University
Funded by: National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Institutes of Health

The Early Steps Project is a multisite prevention study that evaluates the EcoFIT model in early childhood to reduce risk for a developmental trajectory leading to early-onset substance use/abuse and associated antisocial behaviors.

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EcoFIT

Ecological Approach to Family Intervention and Treatment (EcoFIT) Integrated with PBS: An Effectiveness Trial in Middle Schools
Current funding period: March 1, 2009–February 28, 2012
Principal Investigator: Dr. John Seeley, Oregon Research Institute
Principal Investigator: Dr. Thomas Dishion, Child and Family Center
Co-Principal Investigator: Dr. Keith Smolkowski, Oregon Research Institute
Co-Principal Investigator: Dr. Elizabeth Stormshak, Child and Family Center
Funded by: Institute of Education Sciences

This study is testing the effectiveness of the Ecological Approach to Family Intervention and Treatment (EcoFIT) intervention in 44 Oregon public middle schools. Effectiveness of the model is being assessed using multiple measured outcomes, including improved student attendance, improved grades of high-risk students, decreased expulsions, decreased use of suspensions, and decreased critical incidents of student problem behavior.

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Oregon Parent Project (OPP)

An RCT of Parent Training for Preschoolers with Delays
Funding period: June 1, 2011–February 29, 2016
Principal Investigator: Dr. Laura Lee McIntyre
Co-Investigator: Dr. Thomas Dishion
Funded by: National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health

This study is examining child and family well-being over the preschool period in 200 families with young children with developmental delays or disabilities. Children and families participate in six assessments during a 2-year period. Half of the families are invited to attend OPP parent education classes based on the Incredible Years parent training program. The Oregon Parent Project examines the effects of early childhood interventions and services on children's adaptive behavior, problem behavior, and family well-being.

Meet the staff of the Oregon Parent Project.

Download a brochure about the Oregon Parent Project.

Read more about the OPP parent education classes

Participate in an OPP study!

OPP Community Partners

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Project Alliance 1: Genetics

Development, Ecology, and Prevention of Early Adult Addictive Behavior
Funding period: May 3, 2012–April 30, 2017
Principal Investigator: Dr. Thomas J. Dishion
Co-Investigator: Dr. Danielle Dick, Virginia Commonwealth University
Funded by: National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Institutes of Health

This program of research is continuing the work of CFC’s Project Alliance 1 by testing genetically informed ecological models of the development of alcohol and other drug (AOD) use and dependence, antisocial behavior, and high-risk sexual behavior in adulthood, and to consider the malleability of risk and protective processes as addressed in the intervention protocol of the Family Check-Up (FCU).

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Project Alliance 1: Relationship

Relationship Dynamics and Young Adult Drug Use and Abuse
Funding period: September 20, 2012–August 31, 2017
Principal Investigator: Dr. Thomas Dishion
Co-Investigator: Dr. Krista Chronister
Funded by: National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Institutes of Health

In this follow-up of the Project Alliance 1 sample, the research team is investigating the covariation between alcohol and other drug use developmental trajectories, social adaptation, and intimate partner adjustment in early adulthood. This sample was originally assessed in 10 waves between ages 11 and 27 years; during the follow-up period original PAL1 participants will be age 28–29 years.

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Project Alliance 1

Understanding and Preventing Adolescent Drug Abuse
Funding period: January 1, 1991–April 30, 2011
Principal Investigator: Dr. Thomas Dishion
Co-Investigators: Dr. Kate Kavanagh
Project Director: Dr. Allison Caruthers
Funded by: National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Institutes of Health

Project Alliance is the longest running grant-funded research project at CFC. In 1996 the Project Alliance 1 team (Dishion and Kavanagh) received a prestigious NIH Merit Award for this program of research, which provided 10 years of funding. This project studied the effectiveness of embedding a family-based intervention in a public middle school context. Specific aims for this project are to evaluate and report the patterns of engagement, mediation, and long-term effectiveness of the family-centered intervention and to refine and test an ecological model of risk behaviors and psychopathology in young adulthood.

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Project Alliance 2

Parenting to Prevent Substance Use in Late Adolescence
Funding period: August 15, 2012-May 31, 2017
Principal Investigator: Dr. Elizabeth Stormshak
Co-Investigator: Dr. Krista Chronister
Co-Investigator: Dr. Thomas Dishion
Funded by: Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development

This study of the Family Check-Up (FCU), which has been examined across various ages and samples, focuses on the transition to adulthood, the period associated with the highest rates of substance use and life-threatening risk behaviors (e.g., high-risk sexual behavior, drinking and driving).

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Collaborative Projects

Development and Psychopathology Training Program

Seminar Series: Development, Emotion, Ecology, and Psychopathology (DEEP)
Funding Period: July 1, 1999–June 30, 2014
Principal Investigator: Dr. Elizabeth Stormshak
Co-Principal Investigator: Dr. Thomas Dishion
Co-Principal Investigator: Dr. Phil Fisher, Oregon Social Learning Center
Funded by: National Institute on Mental Health, National Institutes of Health

The Development and Psychopathology Research Training Grant is a program of research training for doctoral students in the behavioral sciences and for postdoctoral research fellows. The training program tightly links studies on the development of psychopathology and on intervention science. It provides training in diverse approaches and methods used in developmental and child clinical psychology. The program is organized within an ecological framework that integrates neuroscience, cognitive psychology, personality, social development, and intervention science.

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Early Steps: Early Family-Centered Prevention of Drug Use Risk

A multisite prevention study to reduce risk for a developmental trajectory leading to early-onset substance use/abuse and associated antisocial behaviors.

MORE ABOUT EARLY STEPS...

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Completed Projects (selected)

Family Check-Up Website

An Internet Infrastructure for Quality Implementation of the Family Check-Up
Funding period: September 30, 2009–August 31, 2012
Principal Investigator: Dr. Elizabeth Stormshak
Co-Investigators: Dr. Thomas Dishion, Dr. Kate Kavanagh
Funded by: American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

The goal of this research has been to improve the implementation effectiveness and dissemination of the Family Check-Up (FCU), an ecologically based child and family intervention designed to reduce substance use, support positive family interactions, and reduce child problem behavior. This goal has been accomplished by using Internet-based technological and media support to enhance the FCU protocol.
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CIAO

Understanding and Preventing Adolescent Drug Abuse
Funding period: September 28, 2002–September 27, 2004
Principal Investigator: Dr. Thomas Dishion
Co-Investigators: Dr. François Poulin, Université du Québec à Montréal, Canada; Dr. Jeffrey Kiesner, Universita de Padova, Italy
Funded by: National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Institutes of Health

The CIAO project tested a prevention model of substance use, Project Alliance 1, in Montréal, Québec, and Padova, Italy. The project sought to validate the cross-cultural use of a comprehensive set of assessment tools used to study the development of early drug use. Patterns of substance use initiation and persistent use of various substances during adolescence were compared at each site among 150 youth, age 14 to 15, and their families. Data about substance use, individual and family adjustment, and peer and family processes have contributed to the emerging research base about cross-cultural differences in drug use and socialization. Several papers have resulted from this collaborative, international project.

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The Community Shadow Project

Family Intervention of Youth AOD in Indian Communities
September 1999–March 2010
Principal Investigator: Dr. Alison Boyd-Ball
Co-Investigators: Dr. Kate Kavanagh, Dr. Thomas Dishion
Funded by: National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, National Institutes of Health

The Community Shadow Project studied the benefits of engaging American Indian families and their adolescent youth in a family-based intervention (EcoFIT) developed by Dishion and colleagues (Dishion & Kavanagh, 2003; Dishion & Stormshak, 2007). The project focused on tribal-specific, culturally sensitive family engagement strategies; established resource centers in tribal mental health centers; implemented EcoFIT within the tribes’ behavioral health programs; and evaluated the benefits of the intervention.

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A Family Intervention to
Prevent Child Maltreatment

Funding period: September 1, 2008–August 31, 2011
Principal Investigator: Dr. Elizabeth Stormshak
Co-Investigators: Dr. Thomas Dishion, Dr. Kate Kavanagh
Funded by: Centers for Disease Control

This research is testing the implementation effectiveness of the Family Check-Up (FCU), an ecologically based and empirically validated family-centered intervention designed to reduce problem behavior and coercive family interactions and prevent child maltreatment. A particular aim of this study is to increase the potential for therapists to focus on family management skills known to increase successful child adjustment and to decrease the coercive family processes associated with child maltreatment.

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Next Generation

Enhancing Family-Based Prevention of Adolescent Drug Use
Funding period: October 1, 2000–September 30, 2003
Principal Investigator: Dr. Thomas Dishion
Co-Investigator: Dr. Elizabeth Stormshak
Intervention Coordinator: Dr. Margaret Veltman
Funded by: National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Institutes of Health

Next Generation focused on understanding how middle school parents and schools can work together to promote success, health, and well-being in the next generation of youth. It examined the impact of school-based family interventions for preventing substance abuse and other problem behavior in young adolescents. The study involved about 1200 participants each year across eight middle schools in Eugene School District 4J, Oregon.

In collaboration with the school district, Next Generation provided free services for parents. The project goals were to (a) understand which services are most helpful and to find the most cost-effective way to offer those services to parents who have children in middle school; (b) to improve understanding of how children’s successes and problems develop during adolescence; and (c) to learn more about the role of parents in the teenage years in both academic and social success.

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Project Alliance 2: Transitions

Promoting Adolescent Success in the High School Transition
Funding period: May 27, 2005–February 28, 2010
Principal Investigator: Dr. Elizabeth Stormshak
Co-Investigators: Dr. Thomas Dishion, Dr. Kate Kavanagh
Project Director: Dr. Allison Caruthers
Funded by: National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Institutes of Health

We learned a great deal about substance use prevention with middle school youth from the past decade’s work with Project Alliance 1. The goal for Project Alliance 2 was to build on our success from Project Alliance 1 and enhance that study’s effects. Specific aims were to enhance school-wide behavior management by establishing family resource centers in participating schools, address expectations and concerns relevant to the transition to high school, develop and test intervention components that focus on cultural enhancement, evaluate how family engagement affects the growth of adolescent risk behaviors, and develop a training and fidelity model.

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The Shadow Project

Multicultural Interventions for Adolescent Substance Use
Funding period: September 1, 1999–August 31, 2002
Principal Investigator: Dr. Thomas Dishion
Project Director: Dr. Alison Boyd-Ball
Funded by: National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, National Institutes of Health

The Shadow Project studied the benefits of engaging American Indian families in the treatment of their adolescent youth referred for drug and alcohol problems. The three-year pilot project focused on culturally sensitive strategies for engaging American Indian families in the process of supporting sobriety among their adolescents who were participating in a six-week residential program. Two intervention strategies were compared using a quasi-experimental design. One was treatment as usual, and the other a culturally sensitive motivational interviewing protocol, including a Welcome Home ceremony immediately posttreatment. The latter model supported traditional family management practices, recovery from historical trauma, and cultural restoration.

Family engagement was maximized by using motivational interviewing techniques and services that focus on parental monitoring, peer clustering, and cultural relevance to American Indians. To determine this intervention program’s long-term impact on reducing adolescent alcohol and other drug use, 60 families were followed and assessed one year following treatment. All findings were shared with interested participating tribes in an effort to expand resources for increasing sobriety and mental health of American Indian youth.

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Completed Collaborative Projects

Center on Early Adolescence

Center for Prevention of Problems in Early Adolescence
Funding period: June 2005–May 2010
Principal Investigator:Dr. Anthony Biglan, Oregon Research Institute
Associate Directors: Dr. Thomas Dishion, CFC; Dr. Carol Metzler, Oregon Research Institute
Funded by: National Institute on Drug Abuse, National Institutes of Health

This center was dedicated to research about understanding the development of problem behavior in early adolescence and prevention practices in the state of Oregon. It was a collaboration between Deschutes Research, Inc.; Oregon Research Institute; Oregon State University Department of Public Health; PAXIS Institute, Tucson, AZ; University of Oregon Child and Family Center; University of Oregon Educational and Community Supports; and University of Oregon Institute on Violence and Destructive Behavior. Its mission was to conduct high-quality research on the development, treatment, and prevention of problems of early adolescence; ensure effective dissemination of empirically based interventions to ensure successful social and academic development of all adolescents; bring about a measurable reduction in the prevalence of adolescents with psychological or behavioral problems; and disseminate improved methods for research on early adolescence.

 

For more information: Center on Early Adolescence

Early Start

Family-Based Prevention for Early Conduct Problems
Funding period: September 1, 2000–August 31, 2003
Principal Investigator: Dr. Daniel Shaw, University of Pittsburgh
Co-Investigator: Dr. Thomas Dishion
Funded by: National Institute on Mental Health, National Institutes of Health

Early Start tested a family-based preventive intervention with two-year-old children at risk for developing significant conduct problems. It provided the necessary pilot data to test the model’s applied efficacy, now being studied in the Early Steps project.

Family Motivational Interviews for ETOH and Teens in the ER

Funding period: January 1, 2002–December 31, 2006
Principal Investigator: Dr. Anthony Spirito, Brown University, Providence, RI
Co-Investigator: Dr. Thomas Dishion
Funded by: National Institutes of Health/National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism

This project compared a brief integrated individual and family intervention designed to reduce alcohol use and related problems and an enhanced standard care condition (standard care plus family assessment).

Treating Antisocial Youth: Brain and Behavioral Changes

Funding period: November 1, 2002–October 31, 2005
Principal Investigator: Dr. Debra Pepler, York University, Toronto, Canada
Co-Investigator: Dr. Thomas Dishion
Funded by: National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Mental Health

This project helped develop an interdisciplinary research network to examine the neural and behavioral changes that underpin successful treatment outcomes for antisocial adolescents.

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