The Seven Challenges – Adolescent

Substance Use Prevention or Treatment Does Not Currently Meet Criteria

The Seven Challenges – Adolescent aims to help adolescents decrease substance use and improve their mental health, relationships, academic performance, and self-awareness. The Seven Challenges – Adolescent offers a specific framework for holistic life counseling that incorporates decision making based on seven main content areas: (1) communicating honestly about oneself and about alcohol and other drugs; (2) understanding why adolescents like and use alcohol and other drugs; (3) assessing how alcohol and drug use could be harming themselves and others; (4) assessing the responsibility of oneself and others for problems; (5) developing goals and plans for future accomplishments; (6) making thoughtful life decisions, including adolescents’ use of alcohol and other drugs; and, (7) following through on life decisions and decisions about drug use.

The Seven Challenges – Adolescent does not currently meet criteria to receive a rating because no studies met eligibility criteria for review.

Date Research Evidence Last Reviewed: Aug 2020


The program or service description, target population, and program or service delivery and implementation information was informed by the following sources: the program website, the California Evidence-based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare, the program manual, and the studies reviewed.

This information does not necessarily represent the views of the program or service developers. For more information on how this program or service was reviewed, visit the Review Process page or download the Handbook.

Target Population

The Seven Challenges – Adolescent program targets adolescents and young adults who have substance use problems, including those with co-occurring disorders.


The Seven Challenges – Adolescent program can be delivered in group or individual sessions. Counselors determine the frequency and duration of time that are appropriate based on participant needs and delivery setting. Clients and counselors also communicate in a Supportive Journaling process.

Location/Delivery Setting
Recommended Locations/Delivery Settings

The Seven Challenges – Adolescent program can be delivered in a variety of settings, including outpatient clinics, residential treatment, day treatment, and in the home. It is also used in schools, juvenile probation departments, drug courts, and juvenile justice facilities.

Education, Certifications and Training

The Seven Challenges – Adolescent program training consists of an onsite, 3-day initial training for counselors and clinical supervisors. Completion of this initial training qualifies an individual to provide The Seven Challenges – Adolescent. The Seven Challenges – Adolescent counselors should also have experience working with youth. Counselors are then supervised by Masters’ level clinical supervisors who receive specialized training as part of a three day advanced training. Trained teams are required to meet with The Seven Challenges trainers for quarterly calls and host annual support and fidelity visits.

Program or Service Documentation
Book/Manual/Available documentation used for review

Schwebel, R. (2015). The Seven Challenges manual: 2nd Edition Revised and Expanded. Viva Press.

Available languages

Client materials for The Seven Challenges – Adolescent are available in English and Spanish.

Other supporting materials

Excerpt from The Seven Challenges Book of Readings

Excerpt from The Seven Challenges Manual

Excerpt from The Seven Challenges Journals

Excerpt from The Seven Challenges Activity Book

For More Information


Phone: (520) 405-4559


Note: The details on Dosage; Location; Education, Certifications, and Training; Other Supporting Materials; and For More Information sections above are provided to website users for informational purposes only. This information is not exhaustive and may be subject to change.

Results of Search and Review Number of Studies Identified and Reviewed for The Seven Challenges – Adolescent
Identified in Search 2
Eligible for Review 0
Rated High 0
Rated Moderate 0
Rated Low 0
Reviewed Only for Risk of Harm 0
Sometimes study results are reported in more than one document, or a single document reports results from multiple studies. Studies are identified below by their Prevention Services Clearinghouse study identification numbers. To receive a rating of supported or well-supported, the favorable evidence for a program or service must have been obtained from research conducted in a usual care or practice setting.

Studies Not Eligible for Review

Study 10580

Smith, D. C., Hall, J. A., Williams, J. K., An, H., & Gotman, N. (2006). Comparative efficacy of family and group treatment for adolescent substance abuse. The American Journal on Addictions, 15(s1), s131-s136.

This study is ineligible for review because it does not use an eligible study design (Study Eligibility Criterion 4.1.4).


Study 10614

Korchmaros, J. D. (2018). Examining the effectiveness of The Seven Challenges® comprehensive counseling program with adolescents. Journal of Social Work Practice in the Addictions, 18(4), 411-431.

This study is ineligible for review because it does not use an eligible study design (Study Eligibility Criterion 4.1.4).