First-Time Adult Offenders: A Psychoeducational Group Therapy Intervention Manual

Publication Date



A psychoeducational group therapy intervention was created to address the unique psychological needs of first-time adult offenders (FTAOs). FTAOs have been found to have a higher level of internal motivation for change when compared to repeat adult offenders. This motivation is highest in the first three to four months of the sentence, after which they start to present similarly to repeat adult offenders. Additionally, research suggests that FTAOs present with different psychological needs, such as a higher level of anxiety. Unfortunately, there is a lack of available research and psychological resources for this population. As a means to fill this gap and provide a psychological resource for FTAOs, I have developed a psychoeducational group therapy intervention manual to address their unique psychological needs. In this intervention manual, I utilize the cognitive-behavioral therapy model as a framework because it has shown to be an effective modality of treatment for offender populations. The purpose of the manual is to provide FTAOs with psychoeducational resources and concrete tools that will assist during this transitional period. Through the 7-week program, participants will gain self-awareness and learn how to utilize their internal motivation to address their psychological needs. The 7-week intervention program comprises of 90-minute weekly sessions, which include introductions to new concepts, self-reflection activities, group discussion, and weekly homework assignments.

Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology in Clinical Psychology (PsyD)

First Advisor

Wang, Kenneth T.

Document Type





First-Time Adult Offenders, First-time offenders, Criminals Motivation, Intervention manual, Intervention, Group therapy, Group psychotherapy, Criminology


Clinical Psychology | Counseling | Criminology


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