Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Susan Boser, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

John A. Anderson, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Alex Heckert, Ph.D.


The number of children and adolescents with emotional and behavioral disorders has grown dramatically, yet evidenced-based mental health treatment services have long been inadequate. To address this gap, this study evaluates the impact one particular children's mental health treatment intervention has on the functioning of serious emotionally disturbed children and adolescents. This pre-experimental pre-posttest design study evaluates the impact of a community-based children's mental health treatment program, Strengths Based Mobile Therapy, on the level of functioning of children and adolescents receiving treatment in the program. Additionally, this study examines the relationship between age, gender, treatment provider, primary DSM-IV diagnosis, length of treatment, outside agency involvement, and entry level of care with treatment outcome. The primary tool for evaluation of treatment outcome for this study is the Child and Adolescent Functional Assessment Scale (CAFAS), along with data from a pre-existing database. The preliminary findings in this study suggest that this treatment model may have an impact on level of functioning. Additionally, findings of this study suggest that this treatment model may have a maximum effective length or "dose" of treatment to obtain optimal results.