Resiliency based social learning: A strengths based approach to residential treatment

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14 Scopus citations


Residential treatment centers have faced many changes as the involvement of managed care has led to reduced lengths of stay and increases in the severity of problems treated at this level of care. This paper discusses the development of a new theoretical framework that combines social learning theory with the research on resilience to create a strengths based model for residential treatment. This model uses interventions that seek short- and long-term changes in order to meet the changing demands of residential treatment. Specifically, social learning theory is applied to the creation of a behavior management system providing external controls to support immediate behavior change. This aspect of the model provides immediate, but short-term, results. The construct of resilience is then used to create interventions that teach children how to overcome the difficulties they face. The process of learning resiliency skills provides for internalized changes bringing long-term results. Combining these approaches creates a unique way of looking at how we provide treatment that focuses not just on problems, but also upon residents’ strengths.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)21-36
Number of pages16
JournalResidential Treatment for Children and Youth
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 20 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Residential treatment
  • Resilience
  • Social learning theory
  • Strengths based practice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Law


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