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Trial registered on ANZCTR

Registration number
Ethics application status
Date submitted
Date registered
Date last updated
Date data sharing statement initially provided
Type of registration
Retrospectively registered

Titles & IDs
Public title
The ability of the Australian Centre for Arson Research and Treatment (ACART) firesetting treatment program to reduce psychological risk factors in participants aged 14 years and above who have a history of deliberate firesetting.
Scientific title
The ability of the Australian Centre for Arson Research and Treatment (ACART) Firesetters Program to reduce psychological risk factors for firesetting in participants aged 14 and above who have a history of unauthorised firesetting
Secondary ID [1] 282600 0
Universal Trial Number (UTN)
Trial acronym
Linked study record

Health condition
Health condition(s) or problem(s) studied:
Unauthorised firesetting behaviour in people over the age of 14. 289294 0
Condition category
Condition code
Mental Health 289621 289621 0 0
Studies of normal psychology, cognitive function and behaviour

Study type
Description of intervention(s) / exposure
The Firesetter Treatment Program utlises cognitive behaviour therapy to address risk factors for firesetting. Participants will work through a number of exercises, with specially trained clinicians, which have been designed to change their thinking patterns, resolve interpersonal issues and increase skills in problem solving, communication, mood management, and self control. The program involves 14-16 sessions of two hours’ duration, and number of sessions is determined by the complexity of treatment needs identified in the assessment phase. Sessions are usually conducted weekly, however the flexibility of the program allows clinicians to vary this regime as required. It is expected that all participants will complete the program within a 20 week period.
Intervention code [1] 287269 0
Comparator / control treatment
N/A - This is a single group study.
Control group

Primary outcome [1] 289707 0
Primary outcome 1: significant reduction in Identification with Fire Scale (Gannon & O' Ciardha, 2011) score
Timepoint [1] 289707 0
At baseline and at 18 and 30 weeks after intervention commencement
Primary outcome [2] 289708 0
Significant reduction in The Novaco Anger Scale and Provocation Inventory (NAS-PI; Novaco, 2003)
Timepoint [2] 289708 0
At baseline and at 18, and 30 weeks post intervention commencement
Primary outcome [3] 289709 0
Significant decrease in The Revised UCLA Loneliness Scale (UCLA-LS; Russell, Peplau, & Cutrona, 1980)
Timepoint [3] 289709 0
At baseline and at 18, and 30 weeks post intervention
Secondary outcome [1] 303060 0
Significant reduction in The Boredom Proneness Scale-Short Form (BPS-SF; Vodanovich, Wallace, & Kass, 2005)
Timepoint [1] 303060 0
At baseline, and at 18 and 30 weeks after intervention commencement
Secondary outcome [2] 303061 0
Significant increase in The Culture-Free Self-Esteem Inventory (CFSEI; Battle, 1992)
Timepoint [2] 303061 0
At baseline, and at 18 and 30 weeks after intervention commencement
Secondary outcome [3] 303062 0
Significant decrease in scores on The Measure of Criminal Attitudes and Associates-Part B (MCAA-Part B; Mills & Kroner, 1999)
Timepoint [3] 303062 0
At baseline, and at 18 and 30 week post intervention
Secondary outcome [4] 303063 0
Significant increase in scores on The Simple Rathus Assertiveness Schedule—Short Form (SRAS-SF; Jenerette & Dixon, 2010)
Timepoint [4] 303063 0
At baseline, and at 18 and 30 weeks post intervention commencement

Key inclusion criteria
Participants over the age of 14 with a history of at least one unauthorised firesetting incident, assessed as having no significant cognitive impairment or unmanaged serious mental illness at baseline
Minimum age
14 Years
Maximum age
No limit
Both males and females
Can healthy volunteers participate?
Key exclusion criteria
Under the age of 14, significant cognitive impairment or unmanaged serious mental health diagnosis

Study design
Purpose of the study
Educational / counselling / training
Allocation to intervention
Non-randomised trial
Procedure for enrolling a subject and allocating the treatment (allocation concealment procedures)
Methods used to generate the sequence in which subjects will be randomised (sequence generation)
Masking / blinding
Open (masking not used)
Who is / are masked / blinded?

Intervention assignment
Single group
Other design features
Not Applicable
Type of endpoint(s)
Statistical methods / analysis
As this is a repeated measures design, a sample size of 50-100 participants has been deemed sufficient to investigate significant treatment effects from baseline to post-intervention using participants' own data for statistical comparisons.
Data analysis will utilise ANOVA to investigate the significant effects of time of assessment (pre and post assessments) on the treatment area of interest (eg fire interest, social competency, anger). Age, and social desirability will also be co-varied out of analysis to control for possible confounds.

Recruitment status
Date of first participant enrolment
Date of last participant enrolment
Date of last data collection
Sample size
Accrual to date
Recruitment in Australia
Recruitment state(s)

Funding & Sponsors
Funding source category [1] 287380 0
Government body
Name [1] 287380 0
Commonwealth Attorney General's Departmentl
Address [1] 287380 0
Robert Garran Offices
3-5 National Circuit

Country [1] 287380 0
Primary sponsor type
Bond University
University Drive, Robina, Queensland, 4229
Secondary sponsor category [1] 286127 0
Name [1] 286127 0
Address [1] 286127 0
Country [1] 286127 0

Ethics approval
Ethics application status
Ethics committee name [1] 289354 0
Bond University Human Research Ethics Committee
Ethics committee address [1] 289354 0
Bond University
University Drive,
QLD 4229
Ethics committee country [1] 289354 0
Date submitted for ethics approval [1] 289354 0
Approval date [1] 289354 0
Ethics approval number [1] 289354 0

Brief summary
Studies of the treatment of firesetters are limited, being largely focussed on juveniles or conducted in inpatient psychiatric settings. Consequently, there are currently no standardised treatments for adult firesetters in use in the UK, the United States or Australia. Research indicates that predisposing factors for deliberate firesetting include poor interpersonal functioning and poor communication skills, and difficulties regulating emotion (particularly anger) and behaviour. Less is known about specific fire-related beliefs that contribute to this type of offending, however it is likely that, as with other types of offending, firesetters have specific beliefs that allow them to justify, rationalise and minimise their firesetting that arise from underlying
schemas and attitudes supportive of such antisocial behaviour. Jackson’s model has previously informed treatment programs for incarcerated mentally disordered offenders, and intellectually disabled firesetters, although both programs are group-based and tailored to specific
settings that are not easily replicated in Australia. The proposed research aims to develop and evaluate a treatment program that can be delivered to an array of firesetters in a variety of settings, and which closely adheres to established principles of effective offender treatment. Thus it will address the core components relevant to risk of offending generally as well as delivering fire-specific interventions targeted at the hypothesised pathways to arson offending. Both aspects are considered integral to a successful application of risk management and offending treatment for firesetters.
The aims of this project are:
1. To investigate the psychological and psychiatric characteristics of individuals who engage in deliberate firesetting.
2. To develop and trial a psychological intervention to reduce the risk of repeat firesetting.
3. To examine clinical, attitudinal, behaviour change monitoring as a result of involvment in treatment.
Trial website
Trial related presentations / publications
Fritzon, K., Davey, L., & Doley, R. (submitted) The development of a firesetter treatment program: Operationalizing the multi-trajectory theory of adult firesetting.

Fritzon, K., & Doley, R. (submitted) From theory to practice: an empirical validation of the Multi-Trajectory theory of adult fire-setting.
Public notes

Principal investigator
Name 40446 0
A/Prof Katarina Fritzon
Address 40446 0
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
Bond University
University Drive
QLD 4229
Country 40446 0
Phone 40446 0
Fax 40446 0
Email 40446 0
Contact person for public queries
Name 40447 0
A/Prof Katarina Fritzon
Address 40447 0
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
Bond University
University Drive
QLD 4229
Country 40447 0
Phone 40447 0
Fax 40447 0
Email 40447 0
Contact person for scientific queries
Name 40448 0
A/Prof Katarina Fritzon
Address 40448 0
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
Bond University
University Drive
QLD 4229
Country 40448 0
Phone 40448 0
Fax 40448 0
Email 40448 0

Data sharing statement
Will individual participant data (IPD) for this trial be available (including data dictionaries)?
No/undecided IPD sharing reason/comment
What supporting documents are/will be available?
Summary results
No Results