Linking worker-parent working alliance to parent progress in child welfare: A longitudinal analysis

Tyrone Cheng, Celia C. Lo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations


Using a national data set of child welfare cases, we asked how parent progress in a case plan was related to four factors: collaborative engagement, child welfare history, parent characteristics, and social worker characteristics. Our secondary analysis employed a sample extracted from nationally representative longitudinal records of 3185 children and their parents. Results of generalized least squares random-effects modeling showed that parent progress was associated positively with five specific variables: collaborative engagement, maintenance of effective working relationship, parent receipt of assistance in achieving goals, parent satisfaction with collaborative engagement, parent Hispanic ethnicity, and child welfare worker with MSW or degree in other major. Associated negatively with parent progress were parent receipt of assistance with obtaining needed services, out-of-home placement, multiple problems, and family income. Practice implications are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10-16
Number of pages7
JournalChildren and Youth Services Review
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2016



  • Child welfare
  • Collaborative engagement
  • Working alliance

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