HomeLEAPS: Miriam College Faculty Research Journalvol. 23 no. 1 (2004)

Skwelahang Sikolohiya for the Rehabilitation of Prisoners

Jesus Enrique G. Saplala

Discipline: Education, Psychology



Viktor Frankl, a staunch believer in man’s capabilities despite the odds, proposed that men could find inner freedom only when they know themselves. Skwelahang Sikolohiya – a nonformal apostolate program of the Philippine Jesuit Prison Service at the national penitentiary works on that premise: to use psychology as a tool for teaching self-rehabilitation. For the past seven years, more than two hundred prisoners from the maximum-security compound went through this program by taking modules and courses in psychology specifically on general psychology, self-examination, anger management, family dynamics, psycho-spirituality and peer counseling.

This paper is an evaluation of the Skwelahang Sikolohiya program, which proposes that psychology can be used as a tool for the self-rehabilitation of prisoners. It utilizes data gathered from actual cases and evaluation referred to the researcher as volunteer counseling psychologist for the past seven (7) years. The paper presents these cases on how teaching psychology in prison can initiate prisoners to use it for healing past issues and accepting responsibility for one’s behavior that may lead to self-rehabilitation.