Clinician Feedback on Benefits of Manualized Instruction

Michelle Woodbridge (bio) solicited clinician feedback after a year of using a manualized evidence-based intervention.

So after the first year of implementing this evidence-based intervention, we worked with the actual mental health clinicians who were deploying this intervention and asked them what was it like, how was it different to deploy something that's manualized, that's packaged, that has a beginning and an end and 10 regimented sessions versus what they typically do? And they had some really surprising reactions to that.

First of all, they thought that the standardized screening process identified children that they normally would not have identified themselves. We had screened all incoming sixth graders in the district and I think not only were they — it was at a good time for them to learn about incoming new students and the screening provided some additional information they would not have just normally or informally found out on their own. But it identified children that were just a little bit under their radar, maybe internalizers. Not the troublemakers but those who were having internalizing issues that are harder to discern if you don't have a stronger, longer relationship with the kids.

They also said that it was really interesting to have that beginning, the middle, the end, a very regimented direction. And in the end they also were surprised to hear that the kinds of lessons that they taught in sessions 1, 2 and 3 were definitely brought back to them in the voices of the children in the last session. So they asked in session 10, "What did you learn? Do you think this intervention was helpful?" And many of the children were bringing back lessons learned from the first, second, third, fourth, the early sessions, and they were surprised to hear how much it stuck with the children, that it was something that was definitely impactful that did provide them with an organized route to take the children and they could actually see it work and see it stick and have the kids also develop some very unique, supportive relationships in the group environment themselves because of the activities that it promoted together.

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Excerpted from an interview at CBITS Summit 2012 in Santa Monica, CA.

Dr. Woodbridge's work is fully funded by United States Department of Education Grant Number R324A110027, a $3,383,527 grant awarded to SRI International. The views and conclusions expressed are those of the presenter and should not be interpreted as necessarily representing the official policies or endorsements, either expressed or implied, of the USDE or the U.S. Government.


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