Correctional Case Planning: An Examination Into the Impacts of Case Plans on Offender Recidivism
Borseth, Jenna Lynn
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Case planning has become common practice within many correctional intervention programs. While the practice of case planning is not a new idea, it remains a largely neglected field within the study of offender rehabilitation. The current study seeks to expand this literature by investigating the effects of four case plan components: compliance, specificity (consisting of positively stated, measurable, and singular objectives), breadth, and expiration. To do so, the study examines 859 correctional case plans of offenders receiving treatment at a Halfway House facility. The results indicate that case plan compliance, breadth, and expiration are not significantly associated with offender recidivism. Additionally, only one of the specificity domains, positively stated, is significant. The positive relationship indicates that more positively stated objectives are associated with higher recidivism when other case plan specificity variables are controlled for. While the results fail to support the initial hypotheses, supplemental analyses demonstrate the importance of continued research on impacts of case plans. As a result, this paper should not be used as a justification to dismiss case planning but rather as a call for more research. The discussion section provides a continued narrative on how future research can expand on what is currently understood about the impacts of case planning on offender recidivism outcomes.