Video Interaction Guidance

A feasibility trial of remotely-delivered Video Interaction Guidance [VIG] for families of children with a learning disability referred to specialist mental health services

What is the study about? 

The study wants to find out if Video Interaction Guidance (VIG) could be offered over the internet or phone (called remote) to parents whose child with learning disability has been referred to specialist mental health services.

VIG is not usually offered in specialist mental health services. Many services are thinking about offering VIG, so we need to understand if remote VIG could improve access to support and if it is helpful to families.

The study is the first step in this journey.

What is Video Interaction Guidance?

Video Interaction Guidance (VIG) is a way of looking at how a parent interacts and communicates with their child. A VIG practitioner works with the parent to look together at videos of successful moments between a parent and their child. The parent is supported to reflect and notice what they are doing that is making a difference in the way they are with their child. Support is personalised for each parent. Here is a short video about VIG.


How is VIG delivered remotely? 

The VIG practitioner meets with the parent on Teams or Zoom. They take a short video of the parent and the child, and the week after they watch it together and talk about it. This happens at least three times. The VIG practitioner might meet with the parent in person the first time. Remote VIG was tested during COVID-19. It was found to work as well as in person VIG.

What happens in this study?

We collaborate with several specialist mental health services in England. Parents whose 6-12 year-old child with an intellectual disability has been referred to those services are invited by their service to take part in the study. Data are collected three times during the study. Parents provide information about themselves and their child by filling in a survey and by doing a brief interview with a researcher. Parents are assigned to two groups by chance. Those offered VIG plus the usual support their service would provide and parents who are offered their usual support. The study is currently underway and results are expected to be available in 2025. 


Parent carers are crucial in helping make the most of this research and ensuring that the research team creates accessible materials. A 10-member Parent Carer Advisory (PCA) group works with the research team to make key decisions, provide feedback, participate in creating study materials and collaborate on writing part of the final research paper. 

For any questions about the VIG-LD study, please email us at: VIG-LD@tavi-port.nhs.uk.

Our collaborators are the Tavistock & Portman NHS Foundation Trust, Evelina Children’s Hospital, Cardiff Centre for Trials Research, Brighter Futures for Children (Reading County Council) and The Challenging Behaviour Foundation.