Selected Evidence Base examples

In this section we offer you a sample of the published research which is contributing to our growing evidence base.

A Quantitative and Qualitative Evaluation of the Nurturing Attachments Group Programme

In 2016 the UK Government’s DfE funded Adoptionplus to carry out an evaluation of the programme across 4 geographical sites for adoptive families. The project was led by Prof Julie Selwyn. Overall this study has demonstrated the efficacy of the Nurturing Attachments Group for increasing support to adoptive parents. These parents reported many benefits from their attendance and significant changes were demonstrated. This study was supplemented with a qualitative study.

Quantitative study

The Nurturing Attachments group work programme developed by DDPI member Kim Golding was explored in a research project led by Prof Julie Selwyn. Twenty-nine adoptive families participated in this longitudinal quantitative study, completing questionnaires and validated measures before and after group attendance.

Read the full evaluation of the Nurturing Attachments groupwork programme

Further interesting analysis was conducted to examine parental reflective function on this cohort and the links with their perception of the child’s profile of difficulties. 

This study highlighted how increased reflectivity may explain why parents may report more difficulties for their children.

Nurturing attachments parenting program: The relationship between adopters’ parental reflective functioning and perception of their children’s difficulties

Qualitative studies

Olivia Hewitt led a qualitative analysis of eight of these adoptive parents’ experiences of attending the ‘Nurturing Attachment’ group.

A qualitative exploration of the experiences of adoptive parents attending ‘Nurturing Attachments’, a dyadic developmental psychotherapy informed group

For those interested, Kim has also published a paper detailing the development of her groupwork programmes and how these have developed based on experience of running the groups, informed by the experience of the parents and carers attending and the results of a range of pre- and post- studies carried out by a number of clinicians.

The development of DDP-informed parenting groups for parents and carers of children looked after or adopted from care

Adoptive parents’ experience of DDP

With supervision from Ben Gurney-Smith, Megan Wingfield carried out a qualitative study with 12 adoptive parents who participated in their child’s DDP.

The semi-structured interviews were analysed using interpretative phenomenological analysis and identified several themes which have helpful implications for further research in DDP as a psychotherapy. 

Adoptive parents’ experiences of dyadic developmental psychotherapy

List of Published Research in DDP: Parenting, Practice and Psychotherapy