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Most searched topics

This page is designed to provide quick and easy access to the resources and information that our users find most valuable.

Our most searched and most popular content covers a wide range of areas, from leadership and performance to offender programming and reentry. We have resources on topics such as PREA, Thinking for a Change, staff wellness, diversity, equity, and inclusion, and learning. We also have information on emerging trends and best practices in corrections.

Whether you're new to the field or a seasoned professional, NIC has the resources to support your growth and development.

How can Technical Assistance from NIC help my organization?

NIC technical assistance provides a range of services designed to help corrections agencies succeed. From training and mentoring to on-site assistance and program implementation, NIC's technical assistance experts have the experience and expertise to help agencies address their unique challenges and achieve their goals. Technical assistance can help agencies improve staff training and development, enhance offender programming, and implement evidence-based practices. NIC technical assistance also offers support for emerging trends and issues in corrections, including staff wellness, diversity, equity, and inclusion. With NIC technical assistance, corrections agencies can access the resources and expertise they need to improve operations, enhance outcomes, and make a meaningful difference in the lives of staff and offenders.

What is an example of NIC's Technical Assistance?

In 2020, NIC provided technical assistance to the Alabama Department of Corrections (ADOC) to improve the agency's reentry programming. Through a comprehensive needs assessment and consultation with ADOC staff, NIC experts helped the agency identify areas for improvement and develop strategies to enhance reentry services for offenders. The technical assistance included staff training and development, program implementation, and ongoing monitoring and evaluation. As a result of this technical assistance, ADOC was able to improve the quality and effectiveness of its reentry programming and better support the successful reintegration of offenders into their communities.

Apply for NIC Technical Assistance

Online LMS Training and eCourses

This course provides an overview of Motivational Interviewing (MI). By using specific techniques and applying MI, corrections professionals can help increase offenders’ motivation to make changes in their lives that will reduce their likelihood of reoffending.

This course will focus on the leadership role you can take in your organization during critical incidents. It also explores how leadership perspective can be the lens to proactively anticipate crisis situations.

This course will introduce you to the purpose of the NIC’s Correctional Leadership Competency Model and how it can be used to develop you, your team, and your organization.

During this course, you will learn about the characteristics of effective performance objectives. You will also learn to differentiate between complete and incomplete performance objectives, and lower and higher levels of performance objectives.
Related Topics

The arrest of a parent can be traumatic for many children. As noted in a comprehensive review of research on children with incarcerated parents, “The arrest and removal of a mother or father from a child’s life forces that child to confront emotional, social and economic consequences that may trigger

Often regarded as a library for recreation, the full role of the library in corrections is so much more. Both institutional and public libraries offer services and resources that facilitate a smooth transition from criminal justice involvement to crime-free living in the community. Libraries are deterrents of crime, providing alternatives

Welcome to the Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility Portal.

Achieving a work environment that adheres to the principals of diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) is quickly becoming the number one challenge of most employers both in private and public sectors. With current demographic forecasts predicting that most work teams will

Drug-related arrests, convictions, and incarcerations continue to increase each year. The criminal justice system faces the problem of how to handle these high numbers of people with substance abuse and addiction issues flooding the system. As the opioid epidemic unfolds, correctional institutions are looking for best practices that they can

The Employer-Driven Employment Model for Justice-Involved Individuals illustrates four key processes (or sets of steps) that lead to job placement. Using labor market information, you can target justice-involved individuals for high-growth occupations and prepare them for employment in these fields by focusing on employers’ expectations for skilled, productive, and dependable

Evidence-Based Decision Making (EBDM) is a strategic and deliberate method of applying empirical knowledge and research-supported principles to justice system decisions made at the case, agency, and system level. The initiative team developed the EBDM framework, which posits that public safety outcomes will be improved when justice system stakeholders engage

Evidence-based practice (EBP) is the objective, balanced, and responsible use of current research and the best available data to guide policy and practice decisions, such that outcomes for consumers are improved. Used originally in the health care and social science fields, evidence-based practice focuses on approaches demonstrated to be effective

The Evidenced-Based Workforce Training Series - based on evidence-based practices - shows staff how to combine cognitive behavioral interventions with motivational interviewing techniques to address offenders’ gainful attachment to the workforce and/or job loss. This “hand in glove” approach supports the honest exploration of thoughts, feelings, and beliefs affecting offender

Gangs are a continuing national problem that all elements of the public safety community must effectively manage. In a 2012 survey analysis, the Bureau of Justice National Gang Center found that "Following a marked decline from the mid-1990s to the early 2000s, the prevalence rate of gang activity significantly increased

The NIC Green Corrections Initiative seeks to increase awareness among corrections professionals about environmental issues related to the practice of corrections and focus attention on the need to make correctional facilities more energy and resource efficient. The initiative also explores the feasibility of introducing green-collar job readiness training programs in

Leave No Veteran Behind

Since 9/11, more than 2.5 million Americans have served their country in uniform. Many have had multiple tours overseas; for example, in Iraq for Operations Iraqi Freedom and New Dawn and in Afghanistan for Operation Enduring Freedom. To say our service members have been taxed over

The National Institute of Corrections, in partnership with the Women's Prison Association, has developed The National Directory of Programs for Women with Criminal Justice Involvement. Learn more about the directory through the "Online Resources" sidebar in the right column of this page (second link from the top).

The number of

Recent successful juvenile justice and juvenile detention reforms have resulted in better and more meaningful public policy on the use of custody facilities and have triggered significant reductions in juvenile detention and corrections populations. However, a secondary-and perhaps unintended-consequence has been a parallel reduction in the resources available to continue

Why Leadership Development in Corrections?

NIC believes it takes visionary leaders to improve correctional practices and outcomes. We believe leadership development is a process that requires dedicated effort. We believe effective leadership development programs align with agency operational and strategic needs.

To that end, NIC developed Correctional Leadership Competencies for

Services and Resources for Correctional Trainers

NIC offers a variety of resources and services for those who provide training in a correctional setting.

The Learning and Performance Initiative represents NIC’s effort to help build staff training and development capacity in corrections agencies. Below are resources for trainers and curriculum designers

This webpage has been developed in an effort to provide current and useful information to correctional agencies regarding the safe and respectful management of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) persons in custody and under supervision. Relying on a best practices approach, this information will enable correctional and supervising

Motivational Interviewing (M.I.) arose during the 1980s from alcohol counseling research. This research began to suggest that certain types of brief counseling interactions could be as effective as more lengthy interventions and that a certain kind of provider style was better at eliciting change.

M.I. is a person-centered communication method

Reentry refers to the transition of offenders from prisons or jails back into the community. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs 641,100 people were released from state and federal prisons in 2015. Another 10.6 million cycle through local jails (Bureau of Justice Statistics, 2016).


People with mental health issues increasingly receive care provided by correctional agencies. In 1959, nearly 559,000 patients were housed in state mental hospitals (Lamb, 1998). A shift to "deinstitutionalize" people with mental health issues had, by the late 1990s, dropped the number of persons housed in public psychiatric hospitals to

Victims have statutory rights that begin the moment a crime is committed against them. Ideally, victims would be fully informed of their rights at every step in the process: at the time the crime is reported, during the justice process, while the offender is incarcerated, and when the offender reenters

The Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003 (PREA, P.L. 108-79) was enacted by Congress to address the problem of sexual abuse of persons in the custody of U.S. correctional agencies. The National Institute of Corrections has been a leader in this topic area since 2004, providing assistance to many agencies

This collection of resources is intended to provide a broad overview of current research and trends in the management and treatment of sex offenders.

This web page provides lists of resources related to local, state, and federal statistics displayed to help you see the current state of the corrections industry as of the last set of reported data. We do our best to find as much information as we can about each state, however

This web page provides lists of resources related to local, state, and federal statistics. This page also includes applications, visual representations of data in various dashboards, data mapping utilities and other online tools available to the corrections community. Key statistics are vital to corrections related research and provide crucial information

Suicide is a threat to all persons involved in corrections. The rates of inmate suicide are far higher than the national averages, and even higher still for special populations (including juvenile and LGBTI inmates), even corrections officers have a much greater occupational suicide rate. The resources provided will help give

In many ways technology has been a help and a hindrance for the corrections field. People working in the field struggle to decide how to handle these technologies...if at all. Technology consistently changes faster than corrections and/or society can keep up with it. Implementing a technology, or plans to battle

NIC's "Thinking for a Change" program is an evidence-based cognitive-behavioral program designed to help offenders develop pro-social thinking and problem-solving skills. The program emphasizes skill-building and practice in a group setting, and has been shown to reduce recidivism rates for participating offenders. By addressing underlying criminogenic needs, the program aims to improve offender outcomes and promote public safety.

This page provides links to research, case studies, and best practices, demonstrating the value of giving both currently and formerly incarcerated individuals opportunities for rehabilitation through employment. By providing these resources, NIC aims to support communities in creating more inclusive and diverse workplaces while improving public safety.

This page highlights the need for maintaining safety and security while providing opportunities for staff to not become overwhelmed by both institutional and community settings. "Wellness" emphasizes the importance of taking personal well-being seriously and provides a list of topics and resources to help professionals in the corrections field find balance and stay motivated to perform at their best.