Early childhood home visiting, like many public health strategies, promotes behaviors as mediators of outcomes. Efforts to strengthen home visiting requires a solid knowledge of relevant, high-quality theories of behavior change, motivation to use such theories in intervention design and research, and the capability and opportunity to do so. Using theory in intervention design and research enhances the of results and accelerates translation to policy and practice across diverse contexts. Thus, HARC is building resources to support the use of relevant, high-quality theories.

HARC has developed summaries of the 10 theories of behavior change (below) that were familiar to the majority of intervention researchers and that were rated as both high quality and high relevance for home visiting. Summaries include general descriptions of the theory, a diagram of the theory’s key constructs, application of the theory to the Precision Paradigm, and intervention researcher ratings of the theory quality and relevance.

Note: These theories are just some of many theories that can be used in the design and research of home visiting interventions. The theories listed here do not represent all the available theories that can or should be considered in the design and research of home visiting interventions.

Generalizability is the degree to which we can apply results of a study to a broader context. Research results are considered generalizable when the findings can be applied to most contexts, most people, most of the time.

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