Implementation of Dialectical Behavior Therapy in Residential Treatment Programs: A Process Evaluation Model for a Community-Based Agency

Community Ment Health J. 2018 Oct;54(7):921-929. doi: 10.1007/s10597-017-0224-6. Epub 2018 Jan 12.


Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT) can be challenging to implement in community-based settings. Little guidance is available on models to evaluate the effectiveness or sustainability of training and implementation efforts. Residential programs have much to gain from introduction of evidence-based practices, but present their own challenges in implementation. This paper presents a low-cost process evaluation model to assess DBT training piloted in residential programs. The model targets staff and organizational factors associated with successful implementation of evidence-based practices and matches data collection to the four stages of the DBT training model. The strengths and limitations of the evaluation model are discussed.

Keywords: Community research; Community-based organizations; Dialectical behavior therapy; Evidence-based practice; Implementation research; Program evaluation.

MeSH terms

  • Community Mental Health Centers / organization & administration*
  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy / education
  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy / methods
  • Dialectical Behavior Therapy / organization & administration*
  • Humans
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Program Evaluation / methods
  • Residential Treatment / education
  • Residential Treatment / methods
  • Residential Treatment / organization & administration*