Department of Family Therapy Dissertations and Applied Clinical Projects

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences – Department of Family Therapy


Anne H. Rambo

Committee Member

Pei-Fen Li

Committee Member

Ronald J. Chenail


Literature supports that family members of individuals who abuse substances are significantly influential, whether it be positive or negative (Liddle et al., 2001). Evidence-based family therapy decreases substance use by adolescents (Slesnick et al., 2006). The purpose of this study was to gain the perspectives of clinical directors regarding decision making of family involvement at inpatient substance abuse treatment centers. Clinical directors were the focus of this study due to their experience, credentials, and their ability to oversee all clients and programs in a substance abuse treatment center. Purposeful sampling was utilized to obtain participants. Saturation was reached at three participants. The study used Thematic Analysis to analyze perspectives of clinical directors and identify themes between and among all participants. The data collection utilized were interviews with clinical directors. The importance of family involvement, factors related to choice of model, and evidence-based models preferred were the main themes discovered utilizing Thematic Analysis. Thematic Analysis exhibited all clinical directors in this study perceived family involvement ‛essential’ and all were not directly in control of decision making regarding family involvement with clients at inpatient substance abuse treatment centers.