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Gender-responsive programming: a qualitative exploration of women's experiences of a gender-neutral cognitive skills programme

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This study examined the experiences of seven women attending the pilot of a new cognitive skills programme in custody. The women were interviewed individually, and four took part in a focus group, one week after finishing a gender-neutral programme. Responses were subject to content analysis. Results indicated that the women felt the programme was relevant to their needs, that they experienced change as a result of the programme, and felt the collaborative facilitation style was responsive to their needs. However, all of the women described disengaging from the programme at points, and the majority felt that they would have been able to engage in the material more meaningfully had the programme been longer. Practical ways of improving the responsivity of programmes for women offenders are discussed.

Keywords: cognitive skills; gender responsivity; rehabilitation; women offenders

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10683161003623256

Affiliations: National Offender Management Service,Reducing Reoffending Policy Group, London, UK

Publication date: February 1, 2012

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