Outcome of the solution-focused self-efficacy enhancement group intervention for adolescents in foster care setting

Viktorija Cepukiene, Rytis Pakrosnis, Ginte Ulinskaite - Children and Youth Services Review


Previous research data suggest that the interventions based on solution-focused approach have a potential to increase adolescents' self-efficacy. Nevertheless, no research has attempted to study the impact of the solution-focused interventions on self-efficacy in foster care settings, where a substantial level of this personality characteristic is crucial for successful adjustment. Moreover, there is a lack of evidence that an increase of foster care adolescents' self-efficacy during psychological interventions relates to better outcomes in their broader psychosocial functioning. A present study is aimed at evaluating changes of foster care adolescents' self-efficacy and psychological functioning during the solution-focused self-efficacy enhancement group intervention for adolescents. In addition, the question is raised whether the anticipated increase in self-efficacy will be related to positive changes in psychological functioning after the intervention.

The study, conducted at three foster care homes in Lithuania, was a quasi-experimental non-randomized real-life practice intervention trial with an intervention (n = 29) and control (n = 29) groups. The Intervention consisted of 3 weekly sessions unified by a common narrative of the train journey towards a higher self-efficacy. Self-Efficacy Scale and Adolescent Psychological Functioning Questionnaire were applied to measure the outcome of the Intervention. Results revealed that participants of the intervention group reported a significant increase in the general self-efficacy with a large effect size as compared to the control group. However, the Intervention had no significant effect on the social self-efficacy. In addition, the relationships between the participation in the Intervention and the improvement in two areas of psychological functioning of foster care adolescents were mediated by the positive change in the general self-efficacy.