Frequently Asked Questions related to:

1) The CEBC Website

    a) I want to use information from the CEBC website, how do I provide correct attribution?

      Information presented on the CEBC website is considered public information and may be distributed or copied. When using information obtained from the CEBC, we ask that you please use the following acknowledgement:

        Material/Image/Information obtained from the California Evidence-Based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare (CEBC) at www.cebc4cw.org.

    b) Does the CEBC offer personalized assistance if I need more help using the program registry or implementation materials?

      Yes, the CEBC offers free individualized support for agencies located in California through email, phone, or teleconference. Click here for more information.

2) The CEBC Program Registry

    a) What is the "scope" of the CEBC Program Registry?

      The CEBC reviews existing programs in the areas selected by the Advisory Committee and examines the research evidence for programs and interventions that can be used by professionals who interact with children and families in the child welfare system. The CEBC does not examine the issues that these practices address. For instance, we do not examine the effects of abuse on children, but we do look at programs that can be used to treat trauma in children. The CEBC also does not endorse any of the programs on the website, the purpose of the CEBC is to list and rate programs for informational purposes.

    Programs and Topic Areas on the Website

    b) I am interested in seeing a review of a program in a topic area that is currently or will soon be featured on the CEBC website — how do I nominate the program for inclusion?

      The CEBC has an open submission window every year. The next window will be in the fall of 2024. Please check back here in September for exact dates. For general information about program requirements and the open submission process, see the How to Submit Your Program to the CEBC handout.

    c) How can I make a suggestion for a new topic area for the CEBC?

      The CEBC's statewide Advisory Committee selects all topic areas. The CEBC appreciates your input on possible topic areas to explore, please use the Contact CEBC form to submit a suggestion. The Advisory Committee will review all suggestions.

    d) How are programs selected to be included on the website?

    e) What function do the topic experts serve?

      The topic experts are involved when a topic area is first being researched. They are approved by the CEBC Scientific Panel and they are contracted by the CEBC to assist in defining the topic area, to provide a list of programs that have known evidence in their area of expertise (or are commonly used in California with or without evidence), and to participate as one of the rater for programs in the Topic Area for which they served as an expert. The topic expert for each topic area is listed at the bottom of the Topic Area page. There are some topic areas where a topic expert could not be located or contracted to help. The topic expert is only involved in the initial topic formation and does not review programs added to the topic area at a later date.

      Important Notes about Topic Experts and the CEBC Review Process:

      • The year the topic was initially reviewed and posted is listed at the bottom of the topic area page in the Topic Expert section.
      • Any programs added to the topic area after that year were done so by CEBC staff without the topic expert's involvement (see CEBC Review Process).
      • A more recent review of the research has been conducted on any program that has been on the website for more than 3 years.
      • The dates the program was originally loaded and last reviewed can be found on the bottom of the page in their program entry.

    f) There is not currently information on the CEBC website about a specific program or topic in which I am interested, what other resources on Evidence-Based Practices can you refer me to?

      Please click here for a list of resources.

    g) What happened to the Child Welfare Relevance Rating that used to be displayed on the Rating Scales page?

      Due to feedback from CEBC users, the CEBC converted the Child Welfare Relevance Rating to a Child Welfare System Relevance Level. With this modification, even if a program is not able to be rated on CEBC Scientific Rating Scale, it has now been assigned a Child Welfare System Relevance Level by the CEBC staff. This allows you to see if the program specifically targets child welfare populations (High), populations similar to those found in child welfare (Medium), or populations not similar to those found in child welfare (Low) whether or not the program has outcomes from comparison studies published in a peer-reviewed journal. This also makes it so that only the CEBC Scientific Rating Scales has numbers attached to it. More information on the levels can be found here.

    The Scientific Rating and Research Review Process

    h) How are programs rated?

    i) Why does the CEBC only look at published, peer-reviewed research when evaluating a program?

      Please click here to see the CEBC's page on Published, Peer-Reviewed Research.

    j) Why do you have programs listed on the website that are Not able to be Rated (NR) on the CEBC Scientific Rating Scale?

      Though the field of child welfare has become increasingly focused on the importance of evidence-based practice to improve services for children and families, the research in this area is still emerging. The rationale for highlighting practices both with and without research is to effectively provide straightforward, unbiased, and reliable information about the level of research evidence currently existing for practices relevant to child welfare. CEBC users are then able to clearly see the level of research evidence for programs that are commonly in use or being marketed in their communities.

    k) Can the scientific rating of a program be changed?

      Yes, the CEBC staff periodically—currently every 3 years— contacts all of the program representatives of programs currently on the site to ask for updated contact information as well as any updates on research that has been published. In addition, the CEBC staff periodically reviews programs that are rated on the CEBC Scientific Rating Scale (i.e., have a rating of a 1-5) to see if new research has been published. CEBC staff also requests that the CEBC Scientific Panel, Topic Experts, and Advisory Committee alert them to any new research on the existing programs that may come to their attention. CEBC website users can also provide information on new research through the Contact CEBC form. All new peer-reviewed, published literature is reviewed.

    l) How often do you re-review the research on the programs that are listed on the CEBC?

      For all programs that are currently able to be rated on the CEBC Scientific Rating Scale (i.e., have a rating of a 1-5), the CEBC staff conducts comprehensive literature reviews to look for new research at least once every three years. As of 2014, a new policy for programs that are Not able to be Rated (NR) was added. These programs are contacted every 3 years to inquire about new research; however, a literature review is not conducted unless new research is brought to the staff's attention or the relevant topic area is under re-review. The CEBC staff also encourages the website users to inform them of any new research that they are aware of using the Contact CEBC form.

      The most recent date that the research evidence for that particular program was reviewed, as well as the original date the program was loaded, is listed at the bottom of the program entry. For instance:

        Date Research Evidence Last Reviewed by CEBC: June 2019
        Date Program Originally Loaded onto CEBC: May 2006

      For information on the re-rating process, please see the CEBC Review Process page and click on "How is a Program Re-Rated?" from the list.

    m) Why would research articles get removed from a program’s Relevant Peer-Reviewed Research section?

      The CEBC utilizes published, peer-reviewed research in the program’s Scientific Rating process. A maximum of 10 articles may be summarized and included on a program’s entry, even if a larger number were evaluated for review and rating. Articles describing a research study with a control or comparison group with outcomes that contribute to the program’s rating in their specific topic area(s) are prioritized for inclusion on the website, since these are relevant to the program’s Scientific Rating.

      The decision was made in 2023 to focus the CEBC research summaries only on articles that can contribute to a rating, and the CEBC staff is in the process of removing articles that no longer meet these new policies, as summarized below. The goal is to reduce confusion for users and more clearly highlight the controlled research by reducing the number of uncontrolled studies that are summarized within the entries of programs rated a 1, 2, or 3 on the CEBC Scientific Rating Scale.

      For these programs, articles on studies without a control or comparison group, such as nonexperimental, qualitative, ethnographic, or case-study research, may be summarized only if they add substantive contextual information to the program description and controlled research, as determined by the CEBC research staff.  For example, a one-group pretest–posttest study conducted in a group home setting may be included if none of the controlled research reported on child welfare involved populations.

      As we rereview the research available for rated programs, the new policies have and will be applied. Programs will be notified if any of their existing articles are removed. The removal of articles does not affect the program rating. Instead, it should be clearer to the website user that the articles listed contributed to the rating of the program.

3) Evidence-Based Practice

    a) What is Practice-Based Evidence and how is it different from Evidence-Based Practice?

      Please click here to access the downloadable CEBC commentary on Practice-Based Evidence and how it is different from Evidence-Based Practice.

    b) What is the common elements approach and what is the evidence base for it?

      Please click here to access the "CEBC Perspective on the Common Elements Approach" page.

Page last updated on 11/18/2023.