Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

The Effects of Solitary Confinement: Commentary on One Year Longitudinal Study of the Psychological Effects of Administrative Segregation

The author comments on research done by the Colorado Department of Corrections and the University of Colorado’s Department of Psychology concerning the effects of solitary confinement. Sections of this article include: the Colorado study; why available research was not used the authors of the Colorado study; available European studies on the effects of solitary confinement; social contact and contamination across groups; whether the study participants were harmed by solitary confinement prior to the study; how the self-reported data was obtained; crisis events, hospitalization, and objective data; and conclusion. Since the research by Colorado was severely flawed, “[i]t is therefore extremely difficult to gain any valuable information about the effects of AS [administrative segregation] and solitary confinement from the Colorado study” (p. 9).