Date of Submission


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)



Department Chair

Robert A. DiTomasso, Ph.D., ABPP

First Advisor

Petra Kottsieper, Ph.D., Chairperson

Second Advisor

Robert A. DiTomasso, Ph.D., ABPP

Third Advisor

John C. Uhler, J.D., Judge, Court of Common Pleas


The aim of the present study was to investigate the individual and collective influences of officer role orientation, the helping alliance, and probationer readiness for change on the reduction of recidivism rates among juvenile offenders. Archival data from a sample of 33 officers and 314 juvenile probationers were examined. Data included an officer demographic form, a probationer demographic and recidivism form, the Subjective Role Orientation and Strategy Scale, the Dual Role Inventory-Revised Probationer Version, and the University of Rhode Island Change Assessment. Results demonstrated that the sample of probation officers overwhelmingly adopted a balanced approach to supervision. This limited a further utilization of this variable for prediction purposes. Probationers who reported a more positive helping alliance with their officers evidenced lower recidivism rates of probation violations and new charges. Readiness for change scores were higher if violations had been handled by the probation department, if increasingly punitive sanctions were evident, and/or if the probationer evidenced a perceived problem or psychological diagnosis. The findings suggest probation departments could benefit from training officers to recognize and strengthen the helping alliance with their probationers, from utilizing sanctions issued by the probation officer to increase readiness for change, and from assisting probationers in identifying an internalized problem that results in interval motivation.

Included in

Psychology Commons