Evaluation of the citizenship evidence-based probation supervision programme using a stepped wedge cluster randomized controlled trial

Dominic Pearson, Cynthia McDougall, Mona Kanaan, David Torgerson, Roger Bowles

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Abstract

This study evaluated a Risk-Need-Responsivity (RNR) evidence-based offender supervision programme, Citizenship, using a randomised controlled trial (RCT). Citizenship has a cognitive-behavioural basis and focuses on education, increasing motivation to change, and community integration. The RCT Is a stepped wedge cluster randomised design which has rarely been used in criminal justice and overcomes some ethical objections to RCT implementation. Participants were all medium- and high-risk offenders commencing probation supervision (N=1,091) in any one of six office units during the 1-year rollout of the programme. Overall there was a non-significant 20% effect of Citizenship in reducing reconvictions. However, controlling for risk, the hazard with higher risk offenders was 34% lower than for the control group. Results therefore support RNR-based probation supervision.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)899-924
Number of pages26
JournalCrime & Delinquency
Volume62
Issue number7
Early online date17 Apr 2014
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jun 2016

Keywords

  • cognitive-behavioural
  • community corrections
  • risk-need-responsivity
  • stepped wedge cluster randomised controlled trial
  • structured probation supervision

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