CfC FP ObjectiveSupporting families and parents
School transition and engagement
Delivered toParents/carers 
Delivered bySocial workers, psychologists, occupational therapists, teachers and others working with children and families
Delivery settingCommunity-based 
Program developerUniversity of Melbourne 

About the program

Tuning in to Teens is a universal parenting program for parents of children aged 10 years and over. The program aims to increase parent-child connection by improving emotional communication in the family. 

The program provides parents with a greater understanding of their teen’s emotional experiences while teaching specific skills that can assist in being supportive, empathic and staying connected with the young person. The program builds on the Tuning in to Kids program, which has been shown to have positive effects on young children. 

Program structure

Tuning in to Teens is delivered in 6 x 2-hour group parenting program with a structured manual for the facilitator to follow. The manual includes a range of resources, including handouts for parents and video material to assist with program delivery. All program resources are made available to trained facilitators online via access to the facilitator portal. The ideas and techniques taught in the program are of specific relevance to parents of adolescents.

Program delivery can be adapted.

Facilitator training

To become a certified facilitator you must complete the Tuning in to Teens training.

The training blends lecture-style and experiential learning modules to equip trainees to successfully deliver the Tuning in to Teens program. This includes concepts of Emotional Intelligence and Emotion Coaching and useful information about adolescent brain development.

Online and in-person training is offered regularly throughout the year.

An In-Service Model of training is also available for organisations who are looking to train larger groups of people. For this service, contact the Tuning in to Kids organisation.


2-day training course (in-person) or 3-session training course (online), and program manual and ongoing supervision: $990 (GST inc) per person.

The cost for in-service training will depend on the size of the group and travel-related requirements. You can find out more by contacting the Tuning in to Kids organisation.

Evaluation and effectiveness

A randomised control trial was undertaken to evaluate the effectiveness of Tuning in to Teens (Kehoe, Havighurst & Harley, 2014). The outcomes of the evaluation showed: 

  • Intervention parents reported significant reductions in their own anxiety/depressive symptoms and improved emotional competence when compared to control families who reported no changes.
  • Parents and their children reported improvements in parenting and reductions in family conflict.
  • Parents reported significant reductions in the young person’s anxiety, depressive symptoms, somatic complaints and behaviour problems. 

A full list and summary of the research is available on the Tuning in to Kids website.


Havighurst, S.S., Kehoe, C.E. & Harley, A.E. (2015). Tuning in to Teens: Improving parental responses to anger and reducing youth externalizing behaviour problems. Journal of Adolescence, 42, 148-158. 

Kehoe, C. E., Havighurst, S. S., & Harley, A. E. (2014). Tuning in to Teens: Improving parent emotion socialization to reduce youth internalizing difficulties. Social Development, 23(2), 413-431. 

Kehoe, C. E., Havighurst, S. S., & Harley, A. E. (2015). Somatic complaints in early adolescence: The role of parents’ emotion socialisation. The Journal of Early Adolescence, 35(7), 966–989.