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Quasi-Experimental Evaluation of Thinking for a Change: A "Real-World" Application

NCJ Number
Criminal Justice and Behavior: An International Journal Volume: 36 Issue: 2 Dated: February 2009 Pages: 137-146
Date Published
February 2009
10 pages

This study examined and evaluated the effectiveness of Thinking for a Change (TFAC), a widely used cognitive behavioral curriculum for offenders.


Results indicate that participation in the TFAC program, as delivered by the Tippecanoe County probation department, is associated with an appreciable reduction in recidivism. Findings show that a specific cognitive behavioral curriculum that is readily available to correctional agencies can work to reduce recidivism. Furthermore, the program was delivered by community corrections staff that did not necessarily possess any exceptional qualification or credentials aside from training on the facilitation of the TFAC program. Also, unlike many evaluations of cognitive programs, neither was this study a demonstration project nor was it delivered in an optimal or artificial environment; research indicates that a program that is delivered in a real-world setting is effective in reducing the recidivism of its participants. Data were collected from 217 individuals in Tippecanoe County that were placed on probation for a felony offense. The Tippecanoe County probation department is located in central Indiana and provides services to adult offenders brought into the correctional system for a felony or misdemeanor offense. Tables, figure, and references

Date Published: February 1, 2009