Title

The Perceptions of Former Female Juvenile Offenders on the Effects of Community-Based Aftercare Services on Their Personal Success: A Qualitative Study

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D)

Department

Counseling

Date of Award

Spring 2015

Abstract

The purpose of this phenomenological study was to describe the lived experiences of former female juvenile offenders, in North Texas, in an attempt to better understand how community-based aftercare services contributed to their personal success. For the purpose of this study, success was generally defined as no rearrests, incarcerations, and or further contact with the juvenile justice system within 18 months following initial contact; and pursuing education and or gainfully employed. Gaining knowledge of the experiences of these former female juvenile offenders gave insight into specific events and components leading to paths of success. This study used the qualitative research method, more specifically the phenomenological approach with an overarching interpretive framework of resiliency and accountability. Former juvenile offenders, meeting the predetermined criteria, were recruited from probation and parole offices, as well as reentry programs in North Texas (Dallas County, Denton County, Rockwall County, & Tarrant County) by probation/parole officer referral and flyers placed in the aforementioned probation/parole offices. In addition, flyers were posted in the general community and mailed out to offenders that have been released, as located through public records searches. Criterion sampling was used as persons not meeting the predetermined criteria were excluded from participation. Exclusions were not made based on race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, or disability. Open-Ended, semi-structured interviews, comprised of nine questions, were conducted with each participant, face to face and individually. All face to face interviews were conducted in the counseling office of the researcher. The interviews lasted between 30-45 minutes and were audio recorded using a password protected Apple iPad. In addition, a demographic questionnaire was given to each participant, in order to gather additional data. Data analysis following interpretive analysis procedures was implemented and an exhaustive description of the phenomenon was presented from the voice of the participant; including a structural description, a textural description, and a statement of the overall essence of the phenomenon. Participants received a $25 gift card for their participation.

Advisor

Christopher Simpson

Subject Categories

Counseling | Social and Behavioral Sciences

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