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Coping Power



Coping Power is a cognitive-behavioral intervention that is delivered to moderate- to high-risk children in the late elementary school and early middle school years. The program lasts from 15 to 18 months and includes an integrated set of child and parent components. Coping Power is based on an empirical model of risk factors for substance use and addresses high-risk children’s deficits in social competence, self-regulation, school bonding, and positive parental involvement. The Coping Power child component consists of 33 group sessions and periodic individual sessions and is delivered in school-based settings. The program helps aggressive and disruptive boys understand the physiology of aggression, especially anger, and teaches them coping strategies such as self-talk (e.g., calming oneself down by telling oneself, “Maybe he didn’t mean that. If I start a fight, I’ll get into trouble.”). The Coping Power parent component consists of 16 group sessions and periodic home visits and individual contacts. Postintervention results indicate that the program has had effects on reducing children’s aggressive behavior and preventing their substance use.

Risk Factors


Antisocial/delinquent beliefs

Early and persistent noncompliant behavior



Poor parental supervision (control, monitoring, and child management)


Low academic aspirations

Low school attachment/bonding/motivation/commitment to school

Poor school attitude/performance; academic failure


Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services: Effective program

Crime Solutions: Promising program


Dr. John E. Lochman
Professor and Doddrige Saxon Chair of Clinical Psychology
University of Alabama
Department of Psychology, Box 870348
Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0348
Phone: (205) 348-7678
Fax: (205) 348-8648
E-mail: [email protected]


Lochman, J. E.; Coie, J. D.; Underwood, M. K.; and Terry, R. (1993). “Effectiveness of a Social Relations Intervention Program for Aggressive and Nonaggressive, Rejected Children.” Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 61:1053–1058.

Lochman, J. E.; Lampron, L. B.; Gemmer, T. C.; Harris, S. R.; and Wyckoff, G. M. (1989). “Teacher Consultation and Cognitive-Behavioral Interventions With Aggressive Boys.” Psychology in the School, 26:179–188.

Lochman, John E., and Karen C. Wells. (2004). The Coping Power Program for Preadolescent Aggressive Boys and Their Parents: Outcome Effects at the 1-Year Follow-Up. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 72(4), 571–78.

Zonnevylle–Bender, Marjo J.S., Walter Matthys, Nicolle M.H. van de Wiel, and John E. Lochman. (2007). Prevention Effects of Treatment of Disruptive Behavior Disorder in Middle Childhood on Substance Use and Delinquent Behavior. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 46(1), 33–39.

Date Created: April 7, 2021