The mission of the Institute for Juvenile Research (IJR) is to develop and promote effective policy and practices to prevent mental health difficulties and relieve the mental health burden of children and families living in high poverty urban communities through research, teaching, and direct service. The programs and models developed and supported by IJR focus on early identification, prevention, and intervention of behavioral, social or emotional difficulties among children and youth. Through strategic linkages with key public policy and community stakeholders, IJR is a major center in the Chicago region for the development, training, and implementation of high quality mental health services spanning the prevention to intervention continuum.
Leading the Way for over 100 Years
Established in 1909, IJR was the first child mental health clinic in the nation and one of the first to train psychologists and psychiatrists in child and adolescent specialties. Its rich history includes ties to Jane Addams’ Hull House, the first juvenile court in the nation, and even the Dick and Jane readers, which were developed at IJR to study the connection between reading difficulties and delinquency. Today it houses nationally recognized programs in psychology (link) and child psychiatry (link) and is a major site for social work training throughout the Chicago region.
IJR blazed a trail early on by being one of the first to integrate medicine, psychiatry, psychology, and social work under the umbrella of child development; a thread that continues to this day. It was also where professionals initially recognized the importance of the larger community to the health of a child.
“Primary emphasis,” said pioneering IJR sociologist Clifford Shaw, “must be placed upon the task of revitalizing the life of the whole community so that the welfare of every child becomes the conscious and deliberate concern of all the citizens.”
Transferred to UIC in 1990, IJR today engages in a broad spectrum of research, clinical service, and training that continues the tradition of innovation.
Comprehensive Care for Children and Adolescents
We provide diagnostic, treatment, case management, advocacy, psychoeducation, and consultation services for the full range of psychiatric disorders, including anxiety disorders, depression, bipolar, obsessive-compulsive disorders (OCD), tic disorders, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), conduct disorder, psychosis, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
We have five specialty programs focused on the major areas of child and adolescent mental illness in addition to our general clinic.
We employ a multidisciplinary systemic approach to treating psychiatric disorders in children and adolescents. Emotional and behavioral disorders in youth are the result of the interplay between biological, genetic, psychological, cognitive, environmental and social systems and present a profound challenge to the youth, to their families, to schools, and to their community at large. Successful treatment includes providing relief from symptoms of the underlying psychiatric disorder, alleviating stressors and conditions that can trigger or exacerbate problems, and enhancing the youth's functioning at home, in the school, and in the community. Comprehensive treatment may involve combining medications and psychotherapy with family therapy and school consultation.
|Edwin H. Cook, Jr., M.D.||Marc S. Atkins, Ph.D.|
|Director, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry||Director, Institute for Juvenile Research|