Cool Kids for Social Anxiety

Cool Kids for Social Anxiety

Our current Government Funded research is evaluating a new version of Cool Kids that directly focuses on social anxiety (Cool Kids Social Anxiety program). Children who have social anxiety are shy and worry a lot about what other people think of them. Children with social anxiety may have trouble in many social situations for example, they may struggle to perform in front of others or to socialise with children or adults; or they may have trouble answering questions in front of the class, or relaxing in a group. If this sounds like the type of anxiety your child experiences register for  an assessment for the Cool Kids Social Anxiety program using the link below under the heading “What do I do now?” If this isn’t the type of anxiety your child experiences, register your interest in the Standard Cool Kids program (first option on the page titled "Programs for Children and Teens").

What does the study involve?

  • An initial assessment to determine if our program is likely to be suitable for your child,
  • If the assessing clinician recommends our research program, participation involves coming to the CEHC for 10 sessions (12 weeks) to see a therapist one-on-one, and
  • Progress assessments, which happen during treatment, immediately after, and 6 months after treatment.

What do the assessments involve?

Clinical assessments are conducted before your family commences treatment as well as after treatment. All assessments involve you and your child being interviewed in person by a therapist and completing tasks and questionnaires about thoughts, feelings and behaviours.

The purpose of the initial assessment is to determine if our program is suitable for your child. These assessments are comprehensive and typically take 3 – 4 hours. After the initial assessment, if you decide that you do not want to proceed with treatment you will have 6 months to take up the offer, after which time a reassessment would be needed to ensure that we have current information on your child. If we believe, after assessment, that our research program is not suitable for your child, you will be provided with other options that would best suit your needs.

Briefer progress assessments take place during treatment, immediately after treatment, and 6 months after treatment. The purpose of the progress assessment is to determine whether your child has improved. You will receive reimbursements of up to $250 of the cost on completion of after-treatment (multiple) assessments. 

What does treatment involve?

If the program is suitable for your child and you decide to participate, you and your child will be randomly allocated to one of two slightly different versions of the Cool Kids Program. Both versions use the current Cool Kids cognitive behavioural approach to treat social anxiety (i.e., skills based treatment). One version has been slightly modified to see if it might be more effective than the other.

The Cool Kids Program involves completing 10, 50 minute sessions over a 12-week period. The program uses a cognitive behavioural approach, that is, it teaches specific strategies for anxiety management including thinking more realistically and gradual exposure to anxiety provoking situations. Your child will attend sessions with a therapist and will be taught practical skills to manage anxiety and build confidence. Parents will attend all or some sessions with their child, depending on the child’s age.

Who decides which treatment we receive?

The treatment you are allocated to is decided randomly, like drawing names out of a hat. You will not be aware of which condition your child has been allocated to. If you would like to know, you can find out the condition after the study is completed. The decision as to which therapist you will have is also decided randomly.

Who will be the therapist?

All therapists at the CEHC have or are completing specialised training in child and adolescent anxiety. All therapists receive ongoing supervision from senior clinical psychologists who have additional expertise in this area.

How much will it cost?

An initial clinical assessment would typically cost $390. However, in return for your participation in our research and training activities we offer a discounted cost of $180.

Treatment as part of this research program is subsidised by government funding. Because of this government support, the Cool Kids Social treatment program costs only $550 (covering 10 sessions).

In addition, up to $250 of the cost will be reimbursed on completion of after-treatment (multiple) assessments. The Cool Kids Social study is funded by the National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia. 

What do I do now?

If you would like to be a part of the Cool Kids Social treatment study or require further information please contact our friendly team at ehc.admin@mq.edu.au, or on (02) 9850 8711. Or complete the online intake, available at Cool Kids Social Intake.

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