intervention hub
Russell Webster

Russell Webster

Criminal Justice & substance misuse expert and author of this blog.

Computerised Cognitive Behavioural Therapy with offenders

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The Intervention Hub provides a range of computerised programmes designed to address offending and other problematic behaviours.

Online desistance

I’ve been aware of the Intervention Hub for some time and the organisation has now reached the point where it has a suite of nine  programmes using Computerised Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CCBT). Although these programmes are based primarily on CBT, they also make use of other theoretical approaches including: Mindfulness; Desistance Theory; Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT); The Cycle of Change;  Motivational Interviewing and Pro-Social Modelling.

The nine programmes, known as hubs, are:

  1. Thinking and Social Skills Hub
  2. Domestic Abuse Hub
  3. Victim Awareness (Restorative Justice) Hub
  4. Anger Management Hub
  5. Wellbeing and Resilience Hub
  6. Alcohol Awareness Hub
  7. Cannabis Awareness Hub
  8. Women’s Hub
  9. Youth Hub

The Intervention Hub can be accessed via any computer, smart phone, tablet that has access to the internet irrespective of operating system. Programmes can be operated by the service user themselves at any time of day or can be accessed alongside a professional to aid discussion and learning.

The video below provides further information on the domestic abuse hub as an example of the approach.

The programmes have been designed to cater for all learning style and so include:

  • Audio bars for those with reading difficulties
  • Visual content such as videos and diagrams
  • Written instructions
  • Case examples
  • Skills practice
  • Downloadable content

Each programme is separated into sessions and each session is broken down into three areas:

  1. Knowledge – The user is presented with multi-modal information to help develop an awareness of the subject matter.
  2. Understanding – Reinforces and assesses understanding whilst also helping practitioners identify any areas of concern or development.
  3. New Skills – The user is offered a number of problem solving strategies and skills to make sustainable changes. They are also able to download a PDF summary of the new skill that they can use outside of the session.

The user is required to complete a pre and post completion questionnaire to measure change and offer their own feedback on the programme. At the end of the programme the user can download a certificate of completion and a post programme report is automatically sent to the relevant Probation Officer or referring professional. This report is sent to the professional’s email account within 24 hours of the user completing the programme.

The pre- and post-completion questionnaires have facilitated evaluation of the effectiveness of the hub programmes. Key findings include:

  • 71% participants showed a positive change in thinking and attitudes
  • 73% offenders reported finding the programme useful
  • 68% participants completed the programme outside office hours.


We have already seen the growing popularity of digital interventions with drug and alcohol users and people with mental health problems

The Intervention Hub extends this approach to work with offenders.

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All Probation Posts are sponsored by Unilink

With over 20 years’ experience in the criminal justice sector, Unilink is a world leader in probation and community corrections software applications, as well as prisoner self-service, prisoner/case management and prisoner communications. Unilink’s integrated suite of products provide a complete digital solution enabling efficient running of prisons and probation. Underpinned by biometrics it integrates seamlessly to deliver security, efficiency and value – while being proven to help rehabilitate prisoners.

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