Evaluation and Assessment of a Modified Correctional Therapeutic Community

Jefferson E. Holcomb, Bowling Green State University
Glenn Shields, The Bowling Green State University
Marian R. Williams, Bowling Green State University
Steven P. Lab, Bowling Green State University

Recent research has demonstrated the potential of corrections-based therapeutic communities (TC) in reducing recidivism and drug relapse among substance abusing offenders. Based upon modifications of original a long-term residential treatment modality, corrections-based TC programs emphasize a holistic treatment approach to changing cognitive, behavioral and emotional responses to create more pros-social and responsible individuals. The unique aspect of TC programs is their reliance on the use of the residential community as a vehicle for individual change and the view of substance abuse as a disorder of the whole person. A major gap in the literature concerns the effectiveness of TC programs with shorter residential periods. This paper is based upon a research project designed to evaluate the operations and effectiveness of the NorthWest Community Correctional Center, a short-term (maximum six month stay) TC program for felony offenders in Northwest Ohio. Research objectives include evaluating the impact of a recently added aftercare program, identifying characteristics most associated with positive outcomes, and comparing outcome measures among TC participants with a matched comparison group of felony offenders under community supervision.

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Updated 05/20/2006