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Prevention, intervention, early childhood education and parent education


NB Language spoken is English unless only Dutch-speaking students participate

Admission requirements

This course builds on the content of:
1. IJzendoorn, M.H. van, & Frankrijker, H. de (red.) (2005; tweede, herziene druk). Pedagogiek in beeld. Inleiding in de pedagogische studie van opvoeding, onderwijs en hulpverlening. Houten: Bohn, Stafleu, Van Loghum.
2. IJzendoorn, M.H. van (2008). Opvoeding over de grens: Gehechtheid, trauma en veerkracht. Amsterdam: Boom.


By supporting parents and other caregivers with their child-rearing tasks, parenting problems and/or child behavior problems may be prevented or reduced. Some parenting programs are designed to support parent-child interaction whereas other programs offer broader support and (also) focus on attitudes, representations and the broader social context of the family. Many studies and meta-analyses have already tested which approach is most effective to reach its preventive goal. In this master course the theoretical backgrounds and practical implications of preventive programs are reflected on. Effectiveness studies are critically scrutinized, using meta-analytic evidence, and it will be examined why and for whom interventions are effective. Students receive a first introduction in how the VIPP program (Video-feedback Intervention to promote Positive Parenting) can be used in practice. Additionally, different intervention methods like cognitive behavior therapy are discussed, as well as how to design a prevention program to promote healthy behavior in families (e.g., healthy eating, exercise). Also, various assignments (e.g., observing sensitive parenting) will illustrate intervention theory and practice.

Course objectives

To gain insight in the theoretical backgrounds and practical applications of preventive parenting intervention programs, including the translation of theory into (clinical) programs. To be introduced to different methods of intervening in families with children and/or parents at risk, and focus on how to implement the Video-feedback Intervention to promote Positive Parenting (VIPP) program. To learn to critically evaluate how preventive intervention programs are evaluated and tested. To practice observational skills in evaluating sensitive parenting.

Achievement levels

1 Substantive knowledge

1.1 has profound knowledge of the various theories and methodological approaches common within the domain of one of the specialisations offered by the Master’s programme;
1.2 is able to analyse and conceptualise questions and problems in one of the specialisations offered by the Master’s programme;
1.3 has the capacity to identify a theoretical framework suitable for addressing problems and issues relevant for one of the specialisations offered by the Master’s programme;
1.4 has knowledge of models and methods of prevention and intervention relevant for one of the specialisations offered by the Master’s programme;
1.5 is acquainted with the professional field of the Master’s specialisation.

2 Research methods and statistics

2.3 is able to critically evaluate aspects of study design and methodology in empirical research.

3 Academic skills

3.1 describing and analysing practical and theoretical issues in human development from both a scientific and an ethical point of view;
3.2 analysing and evaluating scientific literature critically to establish its practical or theoretical relevance;
3.3 formulating a consistent line of reasoning, based on scientific arguments;
3.4 reporting orally and in writing on issues in human development both in an academic and in a professional context.

4 Professional conduct

4.1 connect scientific knowledge and insights to practical issues in human development;
4.2 analyse child-raising and/or educational issues and establish appropriate professional strategies.


Mode of instruction

Lectures and assignments.

Assessment method

Written exam and oral assignment.


During this course Blackboard will be used.

Reading list

  • Juffer, F., Bakermans-Kranenburg, M.J., en Van IJzendoorn, M.H. (eds.) (2008). Promoting positive parenting. An attachment-based intervention. Lawrence Erlbaum, Mahwah NJ. Attention: the paperback is much cheaper than the hardcover. There is only one version of the book: the 2007 version is the same as the 2008 version.

  • Articles and additional textbook: will be announced on BB.
    Book at the bookstore. Literature can be studied during the course (not necessary to read it before the course).


Please note that separate uSis registration is mandatory for lectures, seminars, exams and re-exams. Student who do not register, cannot attend courses or take exams.


  • Registration for the lectures of the course is possible as of 100 calendar days through 10 calendar days before the first lecture at the latest;

  • Registration for the seminars of the course is possible as of 100 calendar days through 10 calendar days before the first seminar at the latest.


Student must register for each exam through uSis. This is only possible until 10 calendar days before the exam. More information on exam registration

Contact information

Co-ordinator of this course is prof. dr. F. Juffer.
Contact and questions: until one hour after the course, as well as before the lecture and during the break.