Normative Feedback and Adolescent Readiness to Change: A Small Randomized Trial

Douglas C. Smith, Jordan P. Davis, Daniel J. Ureche, Karen M. Tabb

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


For adolescents with substance use problems, it is unknown whether the provision of normative feedback is a necessary active ingredient in motivational interviewing (MI). This study investigated the impact of normative feedback on adolescents’ readiness to change and perceptions of MI quality. Adolescents referred for substance use disorder (SUD) assessments were randomized to MI with normative feedback (NF; MI + NF, n = 26) or MI only (MI, n = 22). There were no significant differences between the MI + NF or MI conditions with reference to changes in readiness, and although not significant, there was a decline in readiness for the overall sample. Treatment satisfaction and ratings of MI quality were generally high with no between-group differences. Post hoc analyses revealed a nonsignificant trend where race interacted with treatment condition. Larger replication studies are needed to further study the effects of NF and potential NF by participant characteristic interactions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)801-814
Number of pages14
JournalResearch on Social Work Practice
Issue number7
StatePublished - 2015


  • African Americans
  • addictions
  • adolescents
  • field of practice
  • motivational interviewing
  • normative feedback
  • outcome study
  • population
  • readiness to change

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • General Psychology


Dive into the research topics of 'Normative Feedback and Adolescent Readiness to Change: A Small Randomized Trial'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this