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Child and parent engagement in the mental health intervention process: a motivational framework




This article proposes a conceptual model of child and parent engagement in the mental health intervention process.


A scoping review was performed of articles on predictors of engagement in mental health interventions, the effectiveness of engagement interventions, and interpersonal aspects of care. A comprehensive search of PsycINFO and PsycARTICLES was performed for literature published in English from 2000 to 2012.


Based on the review, a motivational framework is proposed in which engagement is defined as a state comprised of a hopeful stance, conviction, and confidence, brought about when therapists optimize engagement processes of receptiveness, willingness, and self-efficacy.


Implications concern the need to help clients understand what to expect from the therapy process, and to educate therapists about engagement strategies.