Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2004, $236,176)
One individual difference in response to treatment among batterers may be readiness to change, best conceptualized by the stages of change (SOC) model. It is the purpose of this project to: 1) compare the effectiveness of a 26-week SOC group treatment with a standard 26-week cognitive-behavioral gender-reeducation (CBTGR) group treatment; 2) assess the integrity of the two treatments with respect to therapist adherence, therapist competence, and processes of change; 3) conduct exploratory analyses on individual readiness to change as a moderator of treatment condition in predicting outcomes; and 4) conduct exploratory analyses comparing the effectiveness of these two approaches in Spanish-speaking groups. Two-hundred-and-forty court-ordered English-speaking male batterers will be randomly assigned to one of two treatment conditions, for a total of 12 groups in each condition and 10 men per group. In addition, 80 court-ordered Spanish-speaking male batterers will be randomly assigned to one of the two conditions, for a total of four groups in each condition. Effectiveness will be indicated by: a) increased involvement in treatment (lower attrition, higher working alliance, higher group cohesion), b) increased readiness to change, and c) desistance from violence (according to batterer self-report at post-treatment and partner reports at post-treatment, six and twelve month follow-up). Groups will be conducted over the course of two years at the Montgomery County, Maryland Abused Persons Program (APP), with initial, mid-group and post-treatment assessments collected on all group participants. Initial, post-treatment, six month and twelve month partner follow-up assessments will be collected as a function of Montgomery County APP's participation in a project funded by the CDC (R49/CCR 319813-01) to predict batterers' response to treatment.