We examined effectiveness of the IYPT as treatment and preventive intervention.
Results of 50 studies showed that the IYPT is effective regarding child behavior.
Effects with regard to distinct outcomes and distinct informants were found.
Initial severity of child behavior was the strongest predictor of effects.
The IYPT meets criteria for a well-established intervention.
The present meta-analytic review examined effectiveness of the Incredible Years parent training (IYPT) regarding disruptive and prosocial child behavior, and aimed to explain variability in intervention outcomes. Fifty studies, in which an intervention group receiving the IYPT was compared to a comparison group immediately after intervention, were included in the analyses. Results showed that the IYPT is an effective intervention. Positive effects for distinct outcomes and distinct informants were found, including a mean effect size of d = .27 concerning disruptive child behavior across informants. For parental report, treatment studies were associated with larger effects (d = .50) than indicated (d = .20) and selective (d = .13) prevention studies. Furthermore, initial severity of child behavior revealed to be the strongest predictor of intervention effects, with larger effects for studies including more severe cases. Findings indicate that the IYPT is successful in improving child behavior in a diverse range of families, and that the parent program may be considered well-established.