Amber Maiwald, Psy.D., is a 2020 graduate of the Psy.D. Program in Clinical Psychology at Antioch University, New England

Dissertation Committee:

  • F. Alexander Blount, EdD, Committee Chair
  • Barbara Belcher-Timme, PsyD, Committee Member
  • Vincent Pignatiello, PsyD, Committee Member


Moral Reconation Therapy, criminogenic thinking, treatment dropout, offenders, cognitive abilities, personality traits, ACEs

Document Type


Publication Date



No known research has been conducted on whether Moral Reconation Therapy (MRT) actually reduces criminogenic thinking. Similarly, no known research has been conducted to identify factors associated with dropout from the MRT program (i.e., choosing to leave the group before completion/release). Therefore, the purpose of this study was twofold: (a) to discover whether MRT reduces criminogenic thinking, and (b) to determine if criminogenic thinking, ACEs, cognitive abilities, and personality traits, particularly impulsivity, psychoticism, and antisocial traits, influence dropout. If significant effects in one or more of the aforementioned areas are discovered, individuals predicted to have the same profile as past participants who dropped out could potentially receive additional supports to decrease their probability of dropout, subsequently improving recidivism rates. The results of this study confirmed that significant reductions in criminogenic thinking were found from pre-test to post-test, suggesting that MRT is effective in reducing criminogenic thinking. In addition, criminogenic thinking, ACEs, cognitive abilities, and assessed personality traits did not significantly influence dropout, suggesting that other factors, such as intrinsic (e.g., motivation, self-esteem, self-confidence) and relational dynamics may be at play.


Amber Maiwald

ORCID Scholar ID# 0000-0002-1291-1835