Nation’s First Study of Private
Residential Treatment Programs Shows:
Teens Improve at Turn-About Ranch

Read more: Results one year after discharge >>

Between August 2003 and January 2006, Aspen Education Group (previous owner of Turn-About Ranch) participated in the nation’s first large-scale study of its kind, measuring the effectiveness of Aspen’s private residential programs for teens and their families. The study collected survey responses, both at program admission and then again at discharge, from 993 young people ages 13-18, enrolled in Aspen’s residential programs. The study also collected responses from their parents or guardians. The following are highlights that might prove valuable in evaluating your decision to enroll your child in a private residential program.

This ground breaking study was conducted by an independent research company, Canyon Research and Consulting, with oversight by the Western Institutional Review Board. Results of this study were presented at the 114th Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association – August 2006.

Aspen and Turn-About Ranch’s Programs Reduce Behavioral Problems

Teens Are Behaving Better As A Result Of Aspen and Turn-About Ranch’s Programs

a graph showing success at Turn-About Ranch

What Parents and their Teens told Researchers: At admission to the program, common behaviors included:

  • Aggressiveness
  • Withdrawal
  • Rule breaking

Why this may be important to you: Both parents and teens agreed the teens’ behavior was not in the normal range of a typical teenager prior to treatment. At discharge, teens were far more cooperative, with their negative behaviors diminished to ‘normal’ levels.

Aspen’s Programs Reduce Emotional Problems

Aspen’s Programs Help Teens Feel Better About Themselves

a graph showing success at Turn-About Ranch

What Parents and Their Teens Told Researchers: The majority of teens entering the program were experiencing emotional problems, including higher levels of:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression

Why This May Be Important To You: After treatment in an Aspen residential program, both parents and teens indicated the teens’ emotional problems had been reduced to a normal range. Aspen’s programs helped teens develop a better sense of self, providing the confidence to be less susceptible to peer pressure, and other outside influences.

Aspen’s Private Residential Programs Succeed Where Others Do Not…

What Parents and Their Teens Told Researchers: 95% of the teens had received prior treatment at other levels-of-care including:

  • Individual therapy
  • Group therapy
  • Psychiatric hospitalization
  • Use of prescribed psychiatric medication
  • Treatment at another residential therapy program or boarding school


8 out of 10 teens who came to Aspen residential programs previously participated in individual and/or group therapy.

Why This May Be Important To You: Aspen’s residential programs provided more than just hope for these teens and their families. Teens who have not responded to other treatments improve during treatment at Aspen’s private residential treatment programs.

Better Lives For Teens

What Parents And Their Teens Told Researchers: Upon admission, teens were experiencing various psychological and social challenges including:

  • Disruptive behavior disorders
  • Substance abuse
  • Mood disorders
  • Learning disorders
  • Eating disorders
  • Personality disorders
  • Anxiety
  • Trauma

Why This May Be Important To You: After enrollment, participation and completion of an Aspen program, there was dramatic improvement on all measures of psychological and social issues. In fact, 97% of parents reported that their teens’ overall symptoms relating to these issues were reduced. These results indicate the majority of adolescents change in positive, meaningful, and reliable ways during private residential treatment at Aspen’s programs.

Aspen Helps Families In Trouble

What Parents and Their Teens Told Researchers: At discharge from the program, both parents and teens reported:

  • Better family communications
  • Improved personal family dynamics

Why This May Be Important To You: Prior to treatment, teens and their families were showing signs of serious trouble. Teens and parents weren’t communicating effectively, teens weren’t complying with family rules and expectations, and the whole family was suffering. Aspen’s programs brought significant, positive change to these families.

What this study means for parents: Turn-About Ranch recognizes the difficult challenges parents face when considering a treatment program for their child. Parents often wonder, ’Will a program work for my child? For our family?’ This study indicates Turn-About Ranch’s residential programs do work. They help create better lives for teens, parents, and the whole family.

What this study means for students: Turn-About Ranch’s program helps teens to feel better about themselves, improve their behavior, and develop stronger family relationships.

Read the entire study here (Acrobat Reader Required)

Funding for this study was provided by Aspen Education Group.


My son was struggling and TAR helped him and gave him life skills. He is home now and doing amazing! Not to say there are always bumps in the road, but this facility is one that works.

- Sandra Baker, August 2021

At TAR, doing real work, solving real problems daily was the game-changer... My son has learned how to express his feelings more frequently. He listens more carefully and expects to be listened to. He has come to understand the benefits and value of hard work... We have a long way to go. But we have more positives and more potential to move forward on a positive trajectory than we have had in many years... I firmly believe none of his would have happened without TAR.

- Robi Robichaud, August 2021

We sent our son to Turn-About and I can't say enough good things about this program. The first time I spoke with them they actually gave me some things that they thought I could do at home to possibly work through our issues and not have to use the program! I was immediately impressed that they were concerned with my son and not just selling an enrollment. My son learned so much there and loved all of the staff members. They put their hearts and souls into helping the kids that are there... They gave us a ton of resources to make sure we keep the momentum and have a smooth transition back to home life... It was life changing for everyone of my family members that were involved.

- Anthony Detrick, July 2021

This place has made all the difference, and saved our 16 year old daughter’s life. Previous counseling, hospitalization, and medications did not work, and we were about to give up on her. She’s come out of this program strong, honest, and positive with herself, and future. The people employed at the ranch are caring, genuine, and simply put, one of a kind. Thank you, for giving us our daughter back.

- P. Bell, July 2021

My 14 year old daughter graduated from Turn-About Ranch about 2 months ago and is the best she has ever been... I am beyond grateful that her journey led her to the people who are so gracious, patient, and brutally honest... This is where the most effective therapy took place for her… where she learned to turn suggested tools/ideas/concepts into action and have her eyes opened to new better ways of shaping her perspective, relationships, communication, and living life by higher morals and values...  this [program] does it right!  ...My daughter loves them, misses them and wants to visit on her one year anniversary… but she doesn’t want to return as a resident either… it’s really brilliant!

- AJ Trainer, July 2021

Turn-About Ranch

280 N 300 E.
Escalante, UT 84726
(800) 842-1165