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Video Interaction Guidance Service

What is Video Interaction Guidance (VIG)?

Video Interaction Guidance (VIG) is a way of looking at video clips of people interacting. It supports an understanding of communication. This provides a process for building communication and interaction skills.

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  • It will highlight the strengths people already have
  • It will build on these strengths
  • Seeing yourself communicating effectively is a very empowering and motivating process
  • The process provides an understanding of communication that can be  applied in any interaction
  • A short clip of video is taken (approximately 10 minutes) of the interaction of those involved
  • The video is looked at by the VIG practitioner who will pick out a small number of clips showing positive communication
  • The VIG practitioner returns to the client(s) to feedback and discuss the clips
  • Clients are equal partners in the process with the VIG practitioner
  • The videos belong to the people in them
  • Clients receive a written contract. It says that the video will not be shown to anyone outside of the VIG project without their permission 
  • The model was developed in Holland 30 years ago
  • The theoretical base to the model was provided by Professor Colwyn Trevarthen, based at Edinburgh University. He picked out the successful components of mother and baby interactions. These have become the corner stone to the approach and are referred to as “the principles of attuned interaction”

VIG is for parents and carers who want to make changes in their relationship, communication and interaction with their child. An assessment by a professional in the Together for Families services* indicates a concern about:

  • a lack of emotional warmth in the relationship
  • a predominance of negative responses from the parent or carer to the child
  • the parent or carer is not being able to see the world from the child’s point of view
  • the parent or carer having difficulty bonding with their baby or has missed the opportunity to bond with their child when younger
  • the parent or carer being at the early stages of developing a relationship with the child and will benefit from some support to do this
  • a parent or carer needing support to implement their learning from other interventions. (eg Incredible Years, Triple P, Passionate about…)

* (e.g. health visitor for children 3 and under, social worker, family worker, psychologist) 

Before making a request please consider the following

  • Has the assessment you have done with the family or child indicated that VIG would be the appropriate intervention? If so, can you make sure this is clear as part of your request for VIG.
  • Have you discussed whether VIG would be an appropriate intervention with other people working with the family? Is everyone clear why VIG would be helpful?
  • What change is hoped for from the parent or carer and has this been mutually agreed?
  • What impact will this have on the child’s lived experience? Is the parent or carer clear about this?

All requests for involvement of the VIG are managed by the Early Help Hub

If you are not sure whether the service would be right for you or your client, please contact us for information.

You can also watch short video about VIG on the Association for Video Interaction Guidance website.

The VIG Service in Cornwall was evaluated by researchers from Cardiff University in 2019. This work has now been published in the British Journal of Social Work.  You can view the report using the link below.

View the Impact of Staff Training in VIG for Professionals and Families report