Motivational Interviewing (MI) - Family Home Visiting

Motivational Interviewing (MI)

Motivational Interviewing (MI) is a key component of evidenced based family home visiting (FHV) models. The practice of MI was developed by Stephen Rollnick and William R. Miller as a method used to support behavioral changes.

It is designed to be collaboration with a parent or caregiver, to strengthen the parent’s motivation towards a goal by exploring the parent’s own reasons for change. Training for family home visitors explores how people change as well as how an atmosphere of compassion, acceptance and collaboration support change. It teaches practitioners how to create this atmosphere as well as to listen and respond to change talk. Making action plans occurs through a collaborative relationship with the parent.

MI may be simple to understand but it is not easy to apply. For that reason, a combination of learning activities such as training, coaching, coding or on-line discussion results in greater skill with MI. Practicing asking open ended questions, giving affirmation, reflection and summarizing are part of MI training and coaching. It is equally important that family home visiting supervisors receive training and coaching. In this way, supervisors will support the use of MI within the team and within the agency’s family home visiting practice. A supervisor or family home visitor receiving MI Treatment Integrity (MITI) Coding feedback supports the integrity of MI practice. With MITI Coding, the participant receives individual feedback to deepen their understanding of MI application.