Caregiver-therapist ethnic similarity predicts youth outcomes from an empirically based treatment

Colleen A. Halliday-Boykins, Sonja K. Schoenwald, Elizabeth J. Letourneau

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

56 Scopus citations


The effects of caregiver-therapist ethnic similarity on youth outcomes from multisystemic therapy (MST), as implemented in dissemination sites, were examined. Consistent with hypotheses, findings confirmed that youths whose caregivers were ethnically matched with their therapists demonstrated greater decreases in symptoms, longer times in treatment, and increased likelihood of discharge for meeting treatment goals relative to youths whose caregivers and therapists were not ethnically matched. In addition, for youths whose caregivers were of mixed ethnic heritage, caregiver-therapist ethnic match was associated with greater improvements in psychosocial functioning. Ethnic match effects on both treatment length and discharge success were partially mediated by therapist adherence to MST. This study shows the importance of examining the effects of both client and therapist ethnicity on outcomes from empirically based treatments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)808-818
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2005
Externally publishedYes


  • Empirically based treatment
  • Ethnic match
  • Multisystemic therapy
  • Therapist adherence
  • Usual care setting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


Dive into the research topics of 'Caregiver-therapist ethnic similarity predicts youth outcomes from an empirically based treatment'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this