PAMS 4.0 is an evidence based parenting assessment, which has been extensively piloted and evaluated.

PAMS has been developed to present complex information within a format that interfaces well with the
Framework for the Assessment of Children in Need and Their Families (DoH, 2000), the Common Assessment Framework (CAF) for children and young people (DCSF, 2010) and Working Together to Safeguard Children (DfE, 2015, 2018). PAMS can be used as a screening tool or as a comprehensive specialist assessment that is central to the identification and targeting of support required by those families where parents or children have additional and/or complex needs.

PAMS can simplify the measurement of parental capacity especially when this involves the uptake, maintenance or generalisation of parenting skills. Also, PAMS consolidates the assessment data automatically into template reports to help the assessor in their report writing.

In addition to the PAMS 4.0 software, a spiral bound Instruction book, Knowledge book and Parent booklet are included with each pack (see below for more details).  

PAMS 4.0 Sample screenshots and features

Click on images to enlarge:

The PAMS Main software window.

PAMS Case Files capture all the files relating to an assessment , case notes, linked case files, report deadlines and all reports created. This will assist you in managing your assessment, saving you valuable time and increasing efficiency.

Case Files Report Deadlines will help you manage your assessment report deadlines. An alert pop-up box will also appear in PAMS prompting and reminding you when a Report is due (if a Report deadlines alert has been set within the Case File)


PAMS 4.0 Instruction Book spiral bound hard copy book is included and also available in digital format within the PAMS software which can be printed. This 76 page book is an excellent reference and guides the assessor on how to use and apply PAMS 4.0 during and after clinical assessments.

PAMS allows created assessment Reports to be tailored with your personal details to customise your report appearance to your business/workplace.

The Parent Questionnaire is edited and completed in digital format (Microsoft Word format) and also added to the PAMS Case File to be included with the other assessment files.

PAMS Worksheets are completed by professionals during the clinical parenting assessment process.
Worksheets are at the core of the PAMS assessment utilising our unique colour coded Priority rating scoring system.

During the parenting assessment each Worksheet Skill is rated a priority rating which is colour coded according to risk level:
  Priority rating 3 - Skill assessed High Priority Risk
  Priority rating 2 - Skill assessed Medium Priority Risk
  Priority rating 1 -
Skill assessed Low Priority Risk
  Priority rating C - (Criterion Met) Skill assessed No risk

Both parents and professionals alike value this powerful visual representation of the assessment.
These colour coded Worksheet summaries and Profiles give parents an easy to understand graphical view of how they have done in the assessment; whilst also showing professionals the parenting risk areas
and skills which can be targeted for future improvement.

Parents can be assessed both individually or together as a couple. The PAMS software will generate summaries, profiles and reports accordingly to the assessment type.

Worksheet Priority ratings are displayed in the Worksheet summary and Profiles (see below)

A Worksheet Graphical Summary is produced after all worksheet data has been entered. Five different chart types can be selected. Single Summaries can be produced for each parent assessed.
Joint Summaries combine the assessment of 2 parents (taking the best score of both) to produce a graphical summary as a couple.

A Worksheet Graphical Profile is produced after all worksheet data has been entered.
Single Profiles are produced for each parent assessed.
Joint Profile combines the assessment of 2 parents to produce a graphical profile as a couple.

This spiral bound Parent Booklet hard copy is included and is to be completed by the parent. This booklet provides an alternative method for the assessment of skills that are difficult to observe. A digital version is also included within the PAMS software which can be printed.

Knowledge Cartoons are used by the assessor during the parenting assessment.
A spiral bound hard copy is included. A digital version is also included within the
PAMS software which can be printed.

The Initial Screening Tool (IST) is to be completed by the referrer or another professional who knows the family well. The assessment domains on the IST have been condensed into 15 sections, for ease of completion. IST scores are useful for making comparisons across families so that their needs can be prioritised.

All of the PAMS skills have been designed to be clearly observable.  More complex parenting skills can be assessed in greater detail using the Observation Form. This data is then transferred on to the worksheets at the post-assessment stage.

Observation data (from the Observation form above) is presented as a Graph at the click of a button.



All PAMS Software includes free e-mail based technical support. We aim to reply to any support queries the same working day.

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PAMS Author

Dr Sue Mcgaw

Dr Sue McGaw, PAMS Author, founded the UK based NHS Special Parenting Service in 1988.

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