ERIC Number: EJ823790
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Oct
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
Does Marriage and Relationship Education Work? A Meta-Analytic Study
Hawkins, Alan J.; Blanchard, Victoria L.; Baldwin, Scott A.; Fawcett, Elizabeth B.
Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, v76 n5 p723-734 Oct 2008
In this meta-analytic study, the authors examined the efficacy of marriage and relationship education (MRE) on 2 common outcomes: relationship quality and communication skills. A thorough search produced 86 codable reports that yielded 117 studies and more than 500 effect sizes. The effect sizes for relationship quality for experimental studies ranged from d = 0.30 to 0.36, while the communication skills effect sizes ranged from d = 0.43 to 0.45. Quasi-experimental studies generated smaller effect sizes, but these appeared to be due to pretest group differences. Moderate-dosage programs produced larger effect sizes than did low-dosage programs. For communication skills, published studies had larger effects than those of unpublished studies at follow-up; there were no publication differences for relationship quality. There was no evidence of a gender difference. Unfortunately, a lack of racial/ethnic and economic diversity in the samples prevented reliable conclusions about the effectiveness of MRE for disadvantaged couples, a crucial deficit in the body of research. In addition, intervention outcomes important to policy makers, such as relationship stability and aggression, rarely have been addressed.
Descriptors: Meta Analysis, Marriage, Effect Size, Coding, Quasiexperimental Design, Interpersonal Relationship, Education, Communication Skills, Gender Differences
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A