Date of Award
Graduate School of Professional Psychology
First Committee Member
Second Committee Member
Therapeutic community, severe and persistent mental illness, change, trauma
In order to gain better understanding of how therapeutic communities instigate change, this interpretative phenomenological study explores the recognized agents of change as reported by current and recent community members of a particular therapeutic community. Four superordinate themes were discovered: the structure of the program, engagement in the community, intentionality/mindfulness, and applied knowledge. While the results from this study are similar in several ways to the current literature, they also expand the literature about therapeutic communities in one important way. The change agents reported as leading to healing strongly resemble current best practice for the treatment of trauma. Limitations and suggestions for further research are discussed.
Keys, Julie Caroline, "Understanding Change in a Therapeutic Community for People with Severe Mental Illness: An Interpretive Phenomenological Study" (2015). Doctoral Papers and Masters Projects. 13.