Seroczynski, A.D., Evans, William, Jobst, Amy D., Horvath, Luke and Carozza, Guiliana. (2016). “Reading for Life and Adolescent Re-Arrest: Evaluating a Unique Juvenile Diversion Program.” Journal of Policy Analysis and Management 35(2): 662-682.
Author Affiliations: University of Notre Dame (Seroczynski, Evans, Horvath, Carozza), Reading for Life, Inc. (Jobst)
Artforms: Bibliotherapy, literature, writingr
Program: Reading for Life
Program Description: Reading for Life is diversion program in a medium-sized Midwestern town which “allows nonviolent, often first-time juvenile offenders to study works of literature in small groups led by trained volunteer mentors…. the intervention attempts to reduce recidivism through character education and moral development” (p. 663).
Program (Study) Location: Medium-sized Midwestern town
Participant Type: Nonviolent juvenile offenders aged 11 to 18
Sample Size: 194 offenders were randomized to the RFL treatment group and 214 to the control group.
Study Published: 2016
Data Type: Randomized controlled trial
Evaluation Focus: Impact of program on recidivism
Summary of Impact: Authors reported a 13.2% reduction in reoffending of any type within two years of starting the program among RFL program participants. This represented a 36% reduction over the control group. RFL proved particularly successful at reducing serious offenses, reducing the likelihood of arrest for a prosecuted felony by 51% compared with the control group.
KEYWORDS: bibliotherapy, character, juvenile, literature, reading, Reading For Life, recidivism, writing