U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Dosage Matters: Impact of a Violent Offender Treatment Program on Juvenile Recidivism

NCJ Number
Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice Volume: 14 Issue: 1 Dated: 2016 Pages: 3-25
Date Published
23 pages

This study estimated the dose-response relationship between the time spent in an intensive, therapeutic treatment program during juvenile incarceration and violent juvenile offenders' odds of recidivism.


A propensity score matching approach was used to determine the treatment effect of a strong and weak dose of this program on recidivism. Analyses reveal that program participants who received any dose of this program exhibited lower odds of recidivism than non-participants. Those who received a stronger dose of treatment were significantly less likely to recidivate during the 3 years following release than those who received no treatment. This effect grew in magnitude when compared with those who received a weak dose. The efficacy of this program's treatment model provides the evidence that, compared to a weak dose, rehabilitation of capital and violent juvenile offenders is more feasible within the venue of juvenile incarceration when treatment is provided to a high-risk population via an intensive dose. (publisher abstract modified)

Date Published: January 1, 2016