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British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy

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About

Welcome to CYP PRN

(Children and Young People Practice Research Network; formerly SCoPReNet)

CYP PRN's mission is to promote psychological health and emotional wellbeing among children and young people in the UK. In supporting high quality and rigorous research the network seeks to improve the quality and effectiveness of school and community-based counselling for the benefit of service users and to widen access to such services by influencing policy makers and those responsible for the commissioning of services.

CYP PRN aims to bring together practitioners, researchers and trainers to engage in research and evaluation in order to develop the evidence base for school and community based counselling services for children and young people. This in turn provides opportunities to improve the effectiveness and acceptability of counselling interventions and to impact on policy decisions. 

Aims

The Children & Young People Practice Research Network (CYP PRN) aims to:

Objectives:

Why Practice Research Networks (PRNs)?

A robust evidence base is derived from detailed studies of the effects of an intervention. The types of research investigating the effects of therapy are often divided into two categories: efficacy research which studies therapy under strictly controlled experimental conditions, comparing the difference between control and intervention groups, and effectiveness research which investigates therapy in routine settings using pre- and post- measures, but without a control group. Efficacy research is often referred to as Evidence based Practice (EBP) and effectiveness research as Practice based Evidence (PBE), the similarity of the two phrases denoting a complementary relationship. EBP tends to ask; does it work? whereas PBE asks: does it work in the real world of routine practice? Both of these are important and related questions.

The fact that an intervention is effective under tightly controlled experimental conditions does not necessarily mean that it will work in routine practice, raising questions of generalisability. In routine practice the clinician is faced with multiple factors: the complex needs and comorbid illnesses of patients, the heterogeneity of clinicians in terms of skills, training and experience. These factors tend to be ruled out in experimental designs and so their effects remain untested. It follows, therefore, that the findings from efficacy research need to be tested in the real world of routine practice before an intervention can be confidently deemed effective.

PRNs provide a mechanism to study clients, interventions and outcomes in typical clinical settings. Defined as a 'group of practicing clinicians that cooperates to collect data and conduct research studies'1, because network members are both practitioners and researchers the PRN helps to promote the dissemination and transfer of research findings into practice. It also addresses the issue of generalisability. Although it can be a demanding task to set up a PRN, once established research can be undertaken in a timely and cost effective manner. 

Members of the PRN collect client data and outcome data using agreed measures and protocols facilitating the robust analysis of outcomes from large numbers of clients from multiple settings. Sample sizes much larger than those feasible in experimental studies can be achieved leading to reliable results. Because of the richness of data available from routine practice and the pooling of research skills across the network, a wide variety of study types can be conducted within the PRN, including case studies, qualitative inquiry and longitudinal outcome studies.

1 McIntyre, J. S., Zarin, D.A., & Pincus, H.A. (1999) Practice guidelines in psychiatry and a psychiatric practice research network. In S. Weissman, M. Sabshin & H. Eist (Eds.), Psychiatry in the new millennium. Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Press, Inc.


Contact us

BACP House
15 St. John's Business Park
Lutterworth
Leicestershire
LE17 4HB

t: 01455 883318
e: research@bacp.co.uk