An Evaluation of Inmate Treatment Performance Measures

Kevin Knight, Texas Christian University

Research has demonstrated that one way to reduce criminality and drug use following incarceration is to provide quality drug treatment to drug-involved offenders while they are in custody. Particularly within correctional settings, long-term residential treatment programs have been found to reduce post-incarceration drug use and criminal activity. Nevertheless, the majority of offenders with substance abuse problems continue to return to society untreated, and go back to a life of alcohol and drug use and criminal activity. Given the limited availability of treatment, therefore, it is critical that correctional programs know who can benefit the most from their treatment program and which components are having the greatest impact on effecting behavioral change. The primary purpose of this presentation is to describe an instrument developed by Texas Christian University researchers that is designed to help identify some of the essential components of the therapeutic treatment process that link with favorable during- and post-treatment outcomes. Specifically, an assessment of inmate treatment performance measures--called the TCU Client Evaluation of Self and Treatment (TCU CEST)--will be presented along with findings from a cross-sectional application of the instrument within several correctional treatment programs.

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Updated 05/20/2006