www.istockphoto.com © Figure8Photos & © Aldo Murillo
www.istockphoto.com © Figure8Photos & © Aldo Murillo

Workpackage 7: Randomized control trial: Group-based psychological treatment of adolescent female conduct disorder

Workpackage leader

Prof. Christina Stadler


Objectives and Tasks of the Workpackage


  • The applied intervention primarily employs a DBT-oriented, cognitive behavioural and motivational interviewing-focused treatment approach including  trauma sensitive care. Thereby  integrating research, theory and clinical experience within correctional settings.
  • The programme is designed to be practical and cost-effective; materials include a facilitator's manual, participant workbooks and practice exercises, training materials, quality assurance procedures and forms, and measures of participant progress.
  • The programme named START NOW aims to improve emotion regulation, distress tolerance, mindfulness and interpersonal effectiveness in order to enhance positive relationships.
  • START NOW was originally developed by Professor Robert L. Trestman, Executive Director, Correctional Managed Health Care, University of Connecticut. The evidence-based programme is already provided at multiple correctional facilities in the United States, as well as internationally.

Structure and procedure: Staff in youth welfare institutions will be trained in basics of dialectical behavior strategies, cognitive behaviour therapy, trauma sensitive clinical care, and motivation enhancement therapy and in running START NOW skills group sessions and accompanying individual sessions. Supervision for the staff members will be provided. Supervision and training is funded by the project, thus no financial costs will arise for youth welfare institutions. 

Study design: Within FemNAT-CD START NOW will be applied  and investigated in European youth welfare institutions. The intervention will be compared to standard care within a waitlist control group design. Primary objectives are to investigate the efficacy of the group-based training for female adolescents with emotion-regulation deficits compared to treatment as usual. It is assumed that add-on highly structured training compared to standard care will result in improved emotion regulation skills and, thus, in overall reduction of oppositional-aggressive behavioral symptoms. Furthermore, we aim to investigate whether endocrinological, autonomous stress (re)activity indices, personality characteristics, neurocognitive factors, and  brain connectivity measures are associated with therapy success. The planned intervention study is a prospective, confirmatory, cluster-randomized, parallel group, multi-centre and international phase III trial. Participating partners are Frankfurt, Aachen, Amsterdam and Basel. Data management procedures are set up by WP5.



Please undefinedclick here, in order to down load the START NOW flyer for institutions.


Please undefinedclick here, in order to down load the START NOW flyer for girls.



To download the 3rd START NOW Newsletter January 2017 click on one of the two languages ( undefinedEnglish version | undefinedGerman version)


To download the 2nd START NOW Newsletter July 2016 click on one of the two languages (undefinedEnglish version | undefinedGerman version)


To download the 1st START NOW Newsletter November 2015 click on one of the two languages (undefinedEnglish version | undefinedGerman version)
















FemNAT CD - Work Plan

FemNAT CD - Work Plan

FemNAT-CD Team


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