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Thinking for A Change (T4C)

The Thinking for a Change curriculum uses as its core, a problem solving component, embellished by both Cognitive Restructuring and Cognitive Social Skills interventions. While each of the concepts are presented systemically, the participant quickly learns and appreciates that Cognitive Restructuring does require some Cognitive Skills methods, as does Cognitive Skills require an objective, systematic approach to identify thinking, beliefs, attitudes, and values. The Cognitive Restructuring concepts are introduced and emphasized during the initial eleven lessons of the program, interspersed with targeted critical social skills that support the cognitive restructuring process. This is followed by the problem solving techniques (lessons 16-21), again supported by appropriate social skills to embellish that concept. Simultaneously, the problem solving portions of the curriculum relies upon the restructuring concepts and techniques already introduced to the participaants, thereby integrating all three approaches. By the time participants reach the twelfth lesson of the program, the Cognitive Restructuring techniques are so ingrained in their repertoire of competencies, that it is no longer required to be emphasized as a separate entitity, becoming second nature to the offender participant. By the 22nd lesson, participants are ready to evaluate themeselves using a skills checklist, in order to develop their own cognitive skills (advanced) curriculum.
The Thinking for a Change Curriculum is comprised of 22 lessons with a capacity to extend the program indefinitely, depending upon how many cognitive social skills are taught. It is recommended that the group meet for an additional ten sessions which is based upon the self-evaluations each participant completes in the 22nd lesson. These additional skills are the result of further assessment of the skill deficits for each participant, and then aggregated across the entire group. In this way, each grouup member is invested and empowered to participate in their own learning and self devleopment, providing a forum for continued skill and cognitive devleopment.
Each lesson is foramtted similarly. It begins with a summary and rationale section in which the scope, breadth, and reason for teaching the lesson is provided. This is followed by concepts and definitions, which outline the key points for the lesson and any definitions necessary for the trainer to facilitate the lesson. The lesson objectives are then outlined, followed by major activities in the lesson. Any supplemental material, equipment and supplies are listed. The content of the lesson is then detailed. Within each lesson, there are both suggested trainer scripts in which at least the fundamental and required information is provided. There are also specific trainer notes given in parallel columns which further embellish the training script.
Participants should be pre-screened after a brief individual interview. Such a meeting which need take no more than fifteen minutes, should set the tone of the learning sessions, direct and focus the participant to their need for the program, and an expectation that positive participation would greatly enhance their options.

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** Three interdependent cognitive approaches
** Based upon Cognitive Restructuring, Cognitive Skills
and Problem Solving strategies
** 22 Lessons well formatted and easy to follow
** Participants attend at least two sessions per week