The concept of Dosage Probation was first conceptualized under the National Institute of Correction’s Evidence-Based Decision Making in Local Criminal Justice Systems (EBDM) Initiative.
It is a new model of supervision which incentivizes offenders’ engagement in risk-reducing activities
by providing the opportunity for early termination from supervision when probationers reach their dosage target.
The proposed “dosage” model of probation suggests that the length of supervision should be determined by the number of hours of intervention necessary to reduce risk, rather than an arbitrarily (or customarily) established amount of time (e.g., 3 years, 5 years).
For many justice-involved individuals, the research shows that correctional intervention is analogous to treating a patient:
too little intervention and the patient receives little or no benefit; too much, and the treatment is ineffective or even harmful.
Given this, we postulate that the length of supervision should depend on how long it takes an individual under supervision to achieve the dosage target—the type and amount of intervention that research tells us he or she needs in order to maximize the potential for behavior change and that is necessary in order to minimize risk to the public—rather than a fixed term of supervision.