U.S. Department of Justice

Archival Notice

This item in our library has been archived due to its date. You have reached this page though a link from a search engine, a different website, or from a bookmark. You may find the information on this page to be dated or no longer available. We are keeping it temporarily available only for archival purposes.

What Works? General Principles, Characteristics, and Examples of Effective Programs

Publication year: 2010
This is an excellent introduction to “What Works” in correctional programming. “The purpose of this paper is to identify the major characteristics of effective offender programming as found in the research literature and provide a description of programs that work. The hope is that this document can assist administrative and treatment staff in the design and implementation of effective offender programming” (p. 3). Topics covered include: the death and rebirth of correctional programming; what the seven general principles and characteristics of effective treatment programs are; and evidence-based programming for criminogenic needs—recovery services programming, educational programming, employment programming, attitudes/associates/social interaction (cognitive-behavioral programs), marital/family relations programming, and programs addressing mental health problems. This report ends with a great chart showing the various program types, program description, recidivism reduction outcomes, and any other significant research findings.