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date: 10 December 2019

Abstract and Keywords

DBT’s popular application in correctional and mental health forensic settings began within five years of the publication of Linehan’s original 1993 treatment manual. Its use in general correctional programming is arguably the first extension of DBT to non-clinical populations. From both mental health and criminological perspectives, its application rationale is strong. Current review of published implementations finds standard comprehensive DBT modifications are consistent with published modifications for other settings/clinical populations. These include skills-only models, shortening skills session length, and expanding targets to more directly address dynamic risk factors and stressors specific to institutional settings. The most frequently cited modifications are simple changes to language and examples from the original manuals that do not change DBT principles or critical components/procedures. Formative studies to date provide support for DBT in forensic settings; wide variations in measurement, implementation, and methodological rigor require further research to reach conclusions of effectiveness.

Keywords: Forensic, corrections, rehabilitation, DBT, correctional programming

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