Hope from Reality
UQ psychology professor Matt Sanders helped parents tame their children through a television program and a national parenting study.
Professor Sanders took part in the ITV program, Driving Mum and Dad Mad which began in February and aimed to “rescue” five families whose children were pushing their parents to the limit.
Cameras tracked the families over eight weeks as they put Professor Sanders’ Triple P (Positive Parenting Program) advice into practice to re-build relationships, tackle discipline and set rules.
Professor Sanders said the five families benefitted from participation in the Triple P course, and he believed viewers also benefitted.
With a research grant from the UK government, Professor Sanders, in collaboration with the University of Manchester, is also running The Great Parenting Experiment.
More than 2000 UK parents are being assessed to see whether watching the program helped them to improve their children’s behaviour and reduce their own stress levels.
“The experiment will be a significant study from which to measure the impact of reality television on population change; we may even show that the media is an effective way for governments to address social issues,” Professor Sanders said.