Coping Power Program

Study: Utrecht

Study Type: Group-Design

Descriptive Information Usage Acquisition and Cost Program Specifications and Requirements Training

The Coping Power Program is a preventive intervention delivered to at-risk children in the late elementary school and early middle school years. Developed as a school-based program, Coping Power has also been adapted for delivery in mental health settings. Coping Power is based on an empirical model of risk factors for substance use and delinquency and addresses key factors including: social competence, self-regulation, and positive parental involvement. The program lasts 15 to 18 months in its full form. An abbreviated version encompassing one school year is also available.

Coping Power is intended for use in fourth grade through middle school. The program is intended for use with students with emotional or behavioral disabilities and any student at risk for emotional and/or behavioral difficulties.

The area of focus is externalizing behavior, which includes: physical aggression, verbal threats, property destruction, noncompliance, high levels of disengagement, disruptive behavior, and social behavior.

Where to Obtain: Oxford University Press

Address: 2001 Evans Road, Cary, NC, 27513

Phone: 1-800-445-9714


Costs include parent and child program facilitator's guides for the program leader, and workbooks for each child and parent participant:

Child component facilitator's guide ($57.95).

Client workbooks for the child component ($64.00 for a set of 6).

Parent component facilitator's guide ($47.95).     

Client workbooks for the parent component ($98.50 for a set of 6).

Materials needed for the program (to be obtained by the clinician) are estimated at $320 for a group of 6 students and their parents:    

$250 Prizes for children     

$25 Puppets      

$10 Game supplies: dominoes, deck of cards

$35 Art supplies:  tape, glue, markers, poster board, construction paper

Typical training costs:

2-day on-site training = $2,500 + trainer’s travel expenses.

2 or 1.5 day training at 6 hours/day = $1,200 (Webinar or on UA campus).

Consultation Calls:  1 hour/month x 12 months x $100 = $1,200  

Coping Power is designed for use with small groups of 4-6 students. One to two interventionists are needed for implementation.

Program administration time is 45-60 minutes, 1 session/week for 34 weeks.

The program includes highly specified manuals or instructions for implementation.

The program is not affiliated with a broad school or class wide management program.

This program does not require technology for implementation.

Twelve hours of training are required for the interventionist. Training typically consists of 2 workshop training days, which can be presented in-person or online.  The workshop covers development of the Coping Power program, empirical support for the program, and an overview of all child and parent program content. Demonstrations (live and video), discussion, and role plays are employed to transmit information and build skills. Follow-up training is also recommended, including bi-weekly consultation calls and submission of video recorded sessions for review and feedback from project staff. 

Interventionists must be professionals. The program assumes that the interventionist has expertise in implementing groups with children referred for disruptive behavior.

Training manuals and materials are not available.

Practitioners may obtain ongoing support through scheduled conference calls and through email.


Participants: Convincing Evidence

Sample size: 77 students (38 program, 39 control)

Risk Status: All child participants had a Disruptive Behavior Disorder diagnosis.









Grade level



  Grade 1


  Grade 2





  Grade 3





  Grade 4





  Grade 5





  Grade 6





  Grade 7





  Grade 8





  Grade 9





  Grade 10





  Grade 11





  Grade 12





Mean Age











  American Indian





  Asian/Pacific Islander




















Socioeconomic status

  Subsidized lunch





  No subsidized lunch





Disability status

  Speech-language impairments


  Learning disabilities


  Behavior disorders


  Mental retardation







  Not identified with a disability





ELL status

  English language learner





  Not English language learner
















Training of Instructors: Therapists (with a master’s degree in psychology, but with limited clinical experience) received 6 months of training prior to the start of intervention and received weekly scheduled supervision of their intervention work.

Design: Convincing Evidence

Did the study use random assignment?: Yes

If not, was it a tenable quasi-experiment?: Not Applicable

If the study used random assignment, at pretreatment, were the program and control groups not statistically significantly different and had a mean standardized difference that fell within 0.25 SD on measures central to the study (i.e., pretest measures also used as outcomes)?: Yes

If not, at pretreatment, were the program and control groups not statistically significantly different and had a mean standardized difference that fell within 0.50 SD on measures central to the study (i.e., pretest measures also used as outcomes), and outcomes were analyzed to adjust for pretreatment differences?: Not Applicable

Were the program and control groups demographically comparable?: Yes

Was there differential attrition for the program and the control groups?: No 

Did the unit of analysis match the unit for random assignment (for randomized studies) or the assignment strategy (for quasi-experiments)?: Yes

Implemented with Fidelity: Partially Convincing Evidence

Description of when and how fidelity of treatment information was obtained: To ensure that these intervention components were provided as planned, procedures were formulated for developing and evaluating intervention integrity. Detailed manuals were used for both the UCPP parent component and the UCPP child component. Moreover, all child and parent group sessions were videotaped for random selection by the supervisors (i.e., experienced clinicians) to check adherence to protocol. 

Results on the fidelity of treatment implementation measure: N/A

Measures Targeted: Convincing Evidence

Targeted Measure

Reliability statistics

Relevance to program focus

Exposure to related support among control group

Parent Daily Report-Overt Aggression

alpha = 0.77

Child aggression


Parent Daily Report-Oppositional Behavior

alpha = 0.85

Child aggression


Child Behavior Checklist-Externalizing Behavior


Child aggression


Teacher Report Form-Externalizing Behavior


Child aggression



Broader Measure

Reliability statistics

Relevance to program focus

Exposure to related support among control group






Mean ES Targeted Outcomes: Data Unavailableu

Mean ES Administrative Outcomes: N/A

Effect Size:

Targeted Measures


Effect Size

Parent Daily Report - Overt Aggression

Parent Daily Report- Oppositional Behavior

0.22 u

Child Behavior Checklist - Externalizing Behavior

0 u

Teacher Report Form - Externalizing Behavior

0.05 u


Broader Measures


Effect Size





*        p ≤ .05

**      p ≤ .01

***    p ≤ .001

–      Developer was unable to provide necessary data for NCII to calculate effect sizes

u      Effect size is based on unadjusted means

†      Effect size based on unadjusted means not reported due to lack of pretest group equivalency, and effect size based on adjusted means is not available


Visual Analysis (Single-Subject Designs): N/A

Disaggregated Outcome Data Available for Demographic Subgroups: No

Target Behavior(s): Externalizing

Delivery: Small groups (n=4-6)

Fidelity of Implementation Check List Available: No

Minimum Interventionist Requirements: Paraprofessionals 12 hours of training

Intervention Reviewed by What Works Clearinghouse: Yes – Intervention

What Works Clearinghouse Review

Children Identified With Or At Risk For An Emotional Disturbance Protocol

Effectiveness: Coping Power was found to have positive effects on external behavior and potentially positive effects on social outcomes for children classified with an emotional disturbance.

Studies Reviewed: 3 studies meet standards out of 5 studies total

Full Report

Other Research: Potentially Eligible for NCII Review: 0 studies