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Evaluating Programs for Men Who Batter - Problems and Prospects

NCJ Number
Journal of Family Violence Volume: 2 Issue: 1 Dated: (March 1987) Pages: 95-108
E W Gondolf
Date Published
14 pages
Batterer programs need to be evaluated more systematically than has hitherto been the case.
National surveys of such programs indicate increasing commonality in counseling methods among programs. These include cognitive restructuring, communications skills training, stress reduction, relaxation, and sex-role resocialization. A review of existing research indicates that most evaluations of such programs are independent, limited, and not comparable with other programs. Methodological improvements in such studies could include comparisons of program modalities, observational study of group processes, and more sensitive measures of indirect and direct abuse to be administered during the program and extended followup. Problematic areas such as access to victims, sensitized responses, selectivity of clients, community context, and possible adverse effects of such programs are discussed. It is concluded that more systematic evaluations of program effectiveness are needed if the uncertainty and controversy surrounding treatment for batterers is to resolved. 60 references.