Pro Social Video Game: Course Correction

Student: Emma Hayes, 2020-2021

Sponsor: GEO Continuum of Care, Boca Raton, FL

GEO Continuum of Care provides evidence based rehabilitation programs for criminal offenders across the United States. Despite programs like these offered by GEO and other traditional post-incarceration programs, 2 out of 3 previous criminal offenders are rearrested and more than 50% are incarcerated again. This is known as recidivism, the tendency of a convicted criminal to reoffend. Research has shown that moderate-risk offenders need 200 hours of prosocial dosage (counseling, support groups, etc.) in a 6 month period but traditional programs only offer about 140 dosage hours and that is only if individuals attend all sessions. GEO Continuum of Care is developing a pro social video game to fill these dosage hour gaps in the hopes of reducing the recidivism rate. The game will be used to assess risk of individuals and reinforce positive behaviors in realistic settings. Gaming can be completed in a variety of settings, whether that is in custody, community, or individually. Goals for the year include assessing the gaming market, reviewing existing research on gaming in correctional facilities, and creating a business plan for this pro social game.