Date of Graduation

Spring 2010


Master of Science in Psychology



Committee Chair

William Deal


mental health court, jail diversion programs, factors in mhc outcomes, group cohesion, social support, coercion

Subject Categories



Mental health courts (MHCs) are "problem-solving" courts for persons with mental illness that serve to divert these individuals into community treatment and away from jail and/or prison (Skeem, Emke-Francis & Louden, 2006). A total of 42 adult MHC probationers were administered the Social Support Appraisal Scale, Group Cohesion Scale-Revised, the Program Environment Scale, and the MacArthur Perceived Coercion Scale; probation officers who worked with each probationer completed the Multnomah Community Ability Scale-Revised. At six-month follow-up, the same battery of instruments were administered. The original hypotheses were: a) as the level of perceived social support increased, so would overall functioning; b) as the perceived level of group cohesion increased, so would the level of overall functioning; c) as the level of coercion decreased, the overall level of functioning would increase; and d) as the program environment became more favorable to the individual, the level of overall functioning would increase. None of the independent variables correlated highly with the measure of overall functioning (Multnomah), thus the hypotheses could not be supported. According to the findings, there was no indication that the four independent variables played any part in the overall functioning outcome.


© Laura E. Natta

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