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Child Abuse Negl. 2017 Oct 6;76:10-22. doi: 10.1016/j.chiabu.2017.10.001. [Epub ahead of print]

Evaluation of second step child protection videos: A randomized controlled trial.

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Graduate School of Education, Alberti Center for Bullying Abuse Prevention, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York, United States. Electronic address:
Research Institute on Addictions, University at Buffalo, The State University of New York, United States.


This randomized controlled trial (RCT) examined the effects of the Second Step Child Protection Unit videos on parents' knowledge, motivation, and self-reported communication with their child about personal safety and childhood sexual abuse prevention. Parents of children between the ages of 3-11 years were randomly assigned to the intervention (watching the Second Step videos) or the control (watching videos on child obesity) groups. They completed measures assessing their knowledge of child sexual abuse (CSA), motivation to discuss CSA, self-reported discussions of CSA, child history of victimization, parent exposure to CSA, and comparable measures on topics of health and nutrition at pre-test. Participants viewed the videos one week later and immediately completed post-test 1, and then two months later completed the measures again. Multivariate Analyses of Covariance (MANCOVAs) and serial mediation analyses were conducted with the final sample of 438. The intervention group, compared to the control group, had significant increases in knowledge (specifically, less restrictive stereotype beliefs about CSA) and motivation to talk with their children about CSA both immediately after the intervention and at the two-month follow-up. Although the intervention did not have a direct effect on parent self-reported conversations with their children about CSA, it had a mediated effect. The intervention increased knowledge regarding CSA, which then predicted motivation, which in turn predicted conversations. The most pronounced effect was the intervention's direct effect of increasing motivation immediately after the intervention, which then increased self-reported conversations with children about personal safety and CSA two months later.


Child sexual abuse; Parents; Prevention

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