The Facilitator Alliance in RE: “Who” Matters, Not Just “What”

By McKell Jorgensen and Alan J. Hawkins

 The Bottom Line First:  Couple relationship education often aims to increase relationship quality, individuals’ confidence in fostering a healthy relationship, and positive interactions between romantic partners. A new study looked at how the “facilitator alliance” – the positive connection between a program participant and the facilitator or instructor – affects program outcomes. They found that participants who reported a stronger facilitator alliance had stronger program outcomes. A gender match was the most important demographic characteristic for the facilitator alliance.  Continue reading “The Facilitator Alliance in RE: “Who” Matters, Not Just “What””

Increasing Youths’ Relationship Confidence with Relationship Education

By McKell Jorgensen and Alan J. Hawkins

The Bottom Line First:  Youth relationship education aims to build youths skills to form and sustain healthy romantic relationships. A new study provides more evidence that these kinds of programs can be effective at helping youth develop more confidence in their abilities to form and sustain healthy relationships. The study also looks at who benefits the most. Continue reading “Increasing Youths’ Relationship Confidence with Relationship Education”

Important, Rigorous Government Study Finds Positive Impacts of RE Programs

The bottom-line (at the top): There has been a healthy debate over how effective relationship education (RE) programs for disadvantaged couples have been. Over the 12 years, the Administration for Children and Families has been pursuing a policy of support for RE programs to improve couple relationships and family stability. The mixed results so far call for more research. That’s why I have been anxiously awaiting the results of the Parents and Children Together evaluation study, another rigorous test of the effectiveness of RE. Good news! This study found positive effects on a range of important outcomes. Continue reading “Important, Rigorous Government Study Finds Positive Impacts of RE Programs”

Is Relationship Education for Individuals At-risk for Intimate Partner Violence a Good Idea?

by Alan J. Hawkins

   The Bottom-line First. Researchers consistently are finding that individuals and couples who are at greater risk for experiencing intimate partner violence (IPV) are participating in relationship education (RE) in significant numbers. A recent study found that individuals who began a RE program with higher risk for IPV reported greater relationship equality and reduced controlling violence and relational violence at the end of the RE program. Continue reading “Is Relationship Education for Individuals At-risk for Intimate Partner Violence a Good Idea?”