Volume 32, Issue 2 (2003)
Commentary: School Contextual Influences on the Dissemination of Interventions
John E. Lochman
Kazdin (2001) has noted that the effects of empirically supported treatments in actual clinical practice are likely to be less robust than have been evident in the controlled clinical research trials examining those treatments. In my experience in providing training to school personnel on cognitive-behavioral interventions for at-risk children, it has been evident that some staff in some school settings respond extraordinarily well to training and ultimately implement the program with great effectiveness,but other staff and other schools seamless able to foster useful implementation of the program. When school psychologists or school counselors come from schools with very autocratic administrations, with very poor communication and little support among the school staff, and with school-wide philosophies that are antithetical to cognitive-behavioral interventions,the fact that the intervention can work well in prior controlled research may have little effect on the program’s utility in these settings.Although the field of intervention research has evolved to the point where we have a relatively clear understanding of how clinical research should evolve in stages from pilot studies to controlled efficacy and effectiveness studies,the process of successful dissemination and implementation of research-based interventions is remarkably less clear. It is not apparent how we can foster clinical use of research-based interventions, and how we can ensure that interventions are conducted in ways that are faithful and true to the tested intervention(Kazdin, 2001).
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