The sole authorized source for Solution Based Casework training and implementation.

Evidence Base & Related Publications

Michiel A. van Zyl, Anita P. Barbee, Michael R. Cunningham, Becky F. Antle, Dana N. Christensen & Daniel Boamah (2014) Components of the Solution Based Casework Child Welfare Model that Predict Positive Child Outcomes


While a number of studies have shown the efficacy of the solution-based
casework (SBC) practice model for child welfare (e.g., Antle,
Christensen, van Zyl, & Barbee, 2012), the current analysis
examines the top ranked behaviors in cases reaching outcomes
of safety, permanency, and well-being in both high adherence
and low adherence cases. Sixteen top behaviors seem to have the
greatest impact on outcomes, all of which are key to the three major
theoretical orientations utilized in SBC. Thus, these results not only
narrow in on the key behaviors that drive success in the practice
model, but also shows the utility of the theoretical underpinnings
of the practice model.
Components of SBC CW Practice Model that Predict Positive Child Outcomes

Pipkin, Sterrett, E., Antle, B., & Christensen, D. (2013). Washington State’s adoption of a child welfare practice model: An illustration of the Getting To Outcomes implementation framework. Child and Youth Services Review.


Despite a great need for evidence-informed practices in childwelfare, very fewchildwelfare systems have implemented evidence-based case management models state-wide.While the literature on implementation from the perspective of model developers and researchers is steadily increasing, there has been little attention to the process of implementation originating from the reverse direction, by community organizations themselves, or with regard to going-to-scale implementation in child welfare. The Getting to Outcomes (GTO) model, which was originally created to help organizations choose and implement prevention programs, is a promising guide for child welfare systems seeking to initiate system-wide implementation of evidence-based practices. The GTO framework provides a step-by-step guide for surveying a system, building motivation, training, and evaluation. This article will illustrate the state-wide implementation of Solution-Based Casework (SBC), an evidence-based model of case management, by Washington State’s Children’s Administration, following the GTO framework. Despite some barriers and obstacles, the GTO model proved to be feasible and to aide in the implementation of SBC. Implications for the GTO model as a framework for empowering community organizations to choose and implement relevant evidence-based practices will be discussed.

Washington State Implementation Article

Antle, B.F., Christensen, D.N., van Zyl, M.A., & Barbee, A.P. (2012). The Impact of the Solution Based Casework (SBC) Practice Model on Federal Outcomes in Public Child Welfare. Child Abuse and Neglect.


Objective: To test the effects of the Solution-Based Casework practice model on federal outcomes of safety, permanency and well-being. The Solution-Based Casework model com-bines family development theory, solution-focused skills and relapse prevention for the casework process in child protection. Method: 4,559 public child welfare cases were reviewed through a CQI case review process. Results: This study found that cases with high levels of fidelity to the model demonstrated significantly better outcomes in the areas of child safety, permanency and well-being and exceeded federal standards, while cases with low fidelity to the model failed to meet federal standards. Conclusion: Components of the Solution-Based Casework were significant predictors of these federal outcomes and accounted for variance in these outcomes better than any other casework process factors.

Federal Outcomes Article

Barbee, A.P., Christensen, D., Antle, B., Wandersman, A., Cahn, K. (2011). Successful adoption and implementation of a comprehensive casework practice model in a public child welfare agency: Application of the getting to outcomes (GTO) model. Children and Youth Services Review, 33(5), 622-633.


In recent years, several states have been developing or adopting casework practice models in an effort to shape the thinking and behavior of front line child welfare workers with a commitment to improving the safety, permanency and well-being outcomes of vulnerable children in their care (Antle, Christensen, Barbee & Martin, 2008; Christensen, Todahl & Barrett, 1999; Courtney, 2009; Folaron, 2009). This article presents one framework for approaching the organizational changes that need to be made in order to support a practice model. The “Getting to Outcomes” Framework (Wandersman, 2009) is a useful approach for ensuring that all areas to support practice change are addressed.

Getting to Outcomes in SBC Implementation

Antle, B.F., Sullivan, D.J., Barbee, A.P., & Christensen, D.N. (2010). The Effects of Training Reinforcement on Training Transfer. Child Welfare32 (2), 223-230.


The purpose of this research was to compare the impact of different training methods on training transfer. Child welfare workers were assigned to one of three groups: classroom training only, classroom training plus reinforcement, and no training. The effect of these different training approaches on the transfer of assessment and case planning skills from the training was examined through a review of 120 child welfare case records. Results indicated that providing both training and reinforcement yielded a higher level of transfer than training alone or no training.

Antle, B.A., Barbee, A.P., Sullivan, D.J., & Christensen, D. (2009). The Prevention of Child Maltreatment Recidivism through the Solution-Based Casework Model of Child Welfare Practice. Children and Youth Services Review, 31, 1346-1351.


The purpose of this research was to evaluate the effectiveness of the Solution-Based Casework model of child welfare practice to prevent recidivism of child maltreatment for families involved with the public child welfare system. Previous research has focused primarily on casework, child, and family characteristics associated with maltreatment recidivism. Most prevention models have targeted high-risk families who have not yet entered this public child welfare system (primary prevention). Hence, this study addresses the need for the field to identify viable practice models for the public child welfare system to prevent re-abuse (secondary or tertiary prevention). This research compared recidivism referrals for a sample of workers who used the Solution-Based Casework model to those who did not use the model. There were 760 cases tracked over a 6-month time period. Results indicate that cases in which the Solution-Based Casework model was used experienced significantly fewer recidivism referrals than those in which the model was not used.

Prevention article SBC

Antle, B.A., Barbee, A.P., Christensen, D. & Martin, M.H. (2008). Solution-based casework: Preliminary evaluation research. Journal of Public Child Welfare, 2(2), 197 – 227.


The purpose of this research was to evaluate the effectiveness of the Solution-Based Casework (SBC) model for child welfare practice. Method: Two case review studies were conducted. The first study compared 48 cases from two worker groups differing in degree of training and implementation of the SBC model. The second study compared the outcomes of 100 high-risk cases based on implementation level of the SBC model. Results: These two studies found that SBC can be implemented across cases differing in type of maltreatment, comorbid factors, and other demographic variables. Results indicated that workers were more actively involved in case planning and service acquisition for families when SBC was implemented. Families were significantly more compliant with casework requirements and achieved more case goals and objectives. The model was particularly effective for families with a history of chronic involvement with the child welfare system. Conclusions: This research supports the effectiveness of SBC for promoting the worker-client relationship and goal achievement for complex child welfare cases.

Antle, B.F., Barbee, A.P., & van Zyl, M.A. (2008). A comprehensive model for child welfare training evaluation. Child and Youth Services Review, 30(9), 1063-1080.


The purpose of this research was to develop and test a comprehensive theoretical model for child welfare training evaluation. Drawing upon the theoretical work in training evaluation as well as empirical research in child welfare, this study proposed a model of training evaluation that included individual and organizational predictors of outcomes; training satisfaction, learning and transfer; as well as federally mandated organizational outcomes of safety, permanency, and well-being. The model was tested through an experimental–control group pre- and multiple-post test design with 72 supervisors and 331 case workers in public child welfare. Supervisors and workers in the experimental group participated in a five-day training on skills for effective casework practice and federally mandated outcomes for child welfare. Subjects completed a number of standardized scales to measure the constructs in the model pre-training, immediately post-training, and two months post-training. The data were analyzed using structural equation modeling. Results indicate that individual learning readiness, supervisor support of learning, and knowledge gain are predictive of training transfer. Recommendations are provided to enhance the effectiveness of child welfare training delivery systems.

A comprehensive model for childwelfare training evaluation

Christensen, D.N., Todahl, J.L. (1999). Solution-based casework: Case planning to reduce risk. Journal of Family Social Work, 3(4), 3-24.


Social workers employed as protective service caseworkers frequently encounter clients who repeatedly harm family members. Emerging partnership models for casework have meant better information gained at assessment, however casework practice models have not emphasized collaborative case planning strategies to reduce the risk of recidivism. This paper describes Solution Based Casework, a partnership approach to casework that targets high risk behaviors and organizes case planning around relapse prevention. The paper details assessment considerations, particularly when working with individuals and families with multiple, cyclical problems. Focusing on solutions as a strategy to foster partnerships with historically reluctant clients is discussed. Finally, case examples and a case plan are presented to demonstrate how case planning targets dangerous behaviors, reduces the chance of relapse, and creates measurable and accountable outcomes.

SBC article from 1999 J of Fam Soc Work