Assessment of Women Offender Correctional Programs

Participants in all components of CSC’s Women Offender Correctional Program demonstrate treatment gain.

Why we are doing this study

In 2010, the Correctional Service of Canada (CSC) implemented a comprehensive model of women offender correctional programming (WOCP). The gender-informed model was created as a continuum, providing a series of program components from admission to community release depending on a women’s level of risk and identified needs.

The current review summarises intermediate results assessing the components of the menu: the Engagement Program (WEP) aims to improve understanding of problematic behaviours, enhance motivation and introduce problem-solving skills, the Moderate Intensity Program (WOMIP) and High Intensity Program (WOHIP) are skill-building components, and the Self-Management in the Institution (WOSMP-I) and in the community (WOSMP-C) programs are the skill-maintenance components.

What we are doing

Enrolments, attrition rates, and time to program start for each component programs were examined. Treatment gains were also assessed using intermediate measures of change in skills, knowledge and motivation. Facilitators rated participant performance on the Generic Program Performance Measure (GPPM) and several self- report measures assessing readiness to change (the University of Rhode Island Change Assessment Scale (URICA)), problem solving and self-efficacy (the Social Problem Solving Inventory (SPSI) and the General Self-Efficacy scale (GSE)), and knowledge acquisition were completed by the offenders.

What we have found so far

Table 1 summarises the enrolment numbers, completion rates, and program start times. Table 2 includes the evidence for treatment gain for each component. All components indicated significant improvement on key targets. Knowledge did not increase for the self management components because of the high level of pre-program knowledge.

Table 1

Enrolment and Completion Rates for WOCP Components
Enrolment (N) 920 648 20 451 697
Median time from admission to program start

45 days

112 days

2.5 years

1 year


Completion Rates 92%





Note:-- indicates data unavailable

Table 2

Participant Treatment Gains for Components of WOCP
Treatment Gains        




Knowledge Acquisition    



Note. Results are not reported for WOHIP due to small sample size.
X indicates no significant change.

What it means

Overall, results suggest that the components of the WOCP are effective in their objectives of enhancing motivation for change and improving skills and knowledge among most participants. Further research is forthcoming assessing the impact of the components on correctional outcomes.

For more information                         

Please e-mail the Research Branch or contact us by phone at (613) 995-3975

You can also visit the Research Publications section for a full list of reports and one-page summaries.

Prepared by:  Aileen Harris & Katie Tam