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Blueprints Certification

Identifying proven programs is the core of the work we do at Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development. In order to fulfill our mission, our team evaluates hundreds of interventions each year with the intent of identifying ones that provide positive outcomes. Interventions certified by Blueprints are rated as either Promising, Model or Model Plus.

– Promising interventions meet the minimum standard of effectiveness.

– Model interventions meet a higher standard and provide greater confidence in the program’s capacity to change behavior and targeted outcomes.

– Model Plus interventions meet an additional standard of independent replication.

Only Model and Model Plus programs are ready for scale.

This section of our website provides a closer look at what it means for a program to be certified by Blueprints. Our standards are described below.

Promising Programs

Promising interventions meet the following standards:

– Intervention specificity: The intervention description clearly identifies the intended outcome(s), whether specific risk and/or protective factors are targeted to produce this change, the population for which the intervention is intended, and how the components of the intervention work to produce this change.

– Evaluation quality: The evaluation trials produce valid and reliable findings. This requires a minimum of (a) one high-quality randomized control trial or (b) two high-quality quasi-experimental evaluations.

– Intervention impact: The preponderance of evidence from the high-quality evaluations indicates a significant positive change in intended outcomes that can be attributed to the intervention and there is no evidence of harmful effects.

– Dissemination readiness: The intervention is currently available for dissemination and has the necessary organizational capability, manuals, training, technical assistance and other support required for implementation with fidelity in communities and public service systems.

Model Programs

In addition to meeting Promising standards, Model interventions also meet these standards:

– Replication: A minimum of (a) two high-quality randomized control trials or (b) one high-quality randomized control trial plus one high-quality quasi-experimental evaluation.

– Long-term follow-up: Positive intervention impact is sustained for a minimum of 12 months after the program intervention ends.

Model Plus Programs

In addition to meeting Promising and Model standards, Model Plus interventions also include:

– Independent Replication: In at least one high-quality study demonstrating desired outcomes, authorship, data collection, and analysis has been conducted by a researcher who is neither a current or past member of the program developer’s research team and who has no financial interest in the program.


Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development
University of Colorado Boulder
Institute of Behavioral Science
UCB 483, Boulder, CO 80309


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Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development is
currently funded by Arnold Ventures (formerly the Laura and John Arnold Foundation) and historically has received funding from the Annie E. Casey Foundation and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.