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International Journal of Behavioral Consultation and Therapy, v4 n1 p68-81 2008

During the last decade, theory and research on human self-regulation has made significant progress. While self-regulation may be understood as a generic term comprising a range of different cognitive, emotional, and behavioral processes, most research pertains to a subcomponent of self-regulation, namely emotional self-regulation, or emotional regulation. The focus of published research is usually on the functional role of self-regulation and emotional regulation in normal behavior, and in behaviors that can easily be quantified with experimental methods, such as eating disorders, alcohol consumption, or sexual behavior. Little is known about specific functional components of self-regulation in more complex dysfunctional behaviors such as personality disorders, or, more specifically, offending behavior, which is often associated with antisocial and borderline personality disorder. If self-regulation research is to successfully inform therapeutic intervention on offender groups, two steps are necessary. First, more research must be conducted focussing on the identification of specific self-regulatory patterns or mechanisms of offender groups, and second, the findings must translate into practical suggestions for the modification of known behavioral intervention strategies. Based on the most important contemporary research lines in self- and emotional regulation, suggestions are made on where and how to incorporate existing knowledge into therapeutic action for offender groups.

Descriptors: Personality Problems, Behavior Problems, Intervention, Therapy, Self Control, Crime, Antisocial Behavior, Criminals, Cognitive Processes, Behavior Change

Joseph Cautilli, Ph.D. & The Behavior Analyst Online Organization. 535 Queen Street, Philadelphia, PA 19147-3220. Tel: 215-462-6737; Web site:

Autor: Ross, Thomas


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