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Tonya Van Deinse

Research Associate Professor

Tonya Van Deinse headshot


Tate-Turner-Kuralt Building


325 Pittsboro Street

Chapel Hill, NC 27599

O: 919-962-6428

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Tonya Van Deinse, PhD, MSW, is a Research Associate Professor at the UNC Chapel Hill School of Social Work and teaches courses in the Community, Management, and Policy Practice concentration, including Social Work with Groups and Communities, Interorganizational and Community-Level Theory and Practice, and Research and Evaluation. Dr. Van Deinse is a mental health services researcher focused on the development, implementation, and evaluation of interventions that span the mental health and criminal justice systems. Her current research projects focus on nationwide approaches to probation for adults with mental illnesses, using implementation science to enhance the uptake of mental health interventions within criminal justice settings, implementing and evaluating integrated re-entry programming for adults with co-occurring substance use and mental health disorders exiting county detention, evaluating the implementation and efficacy of data-driven supervision guidelines for probation, and evaluating cross-sectoral and cross-agency approaches to addressing intimate partner violence and sexual violence and assault.

Degrees and Licenses

Ph.D., University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
MSW, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
BS, Hamilton College

Research and Professional Interests

Implementation Science
Mental Health Services
Criminal Justice
Community Practice Social Work
Interorganizational Networks

Principal Investigator

National Survey of Probation and Mental Health
Durham County Integrated Reentry
Examining the Black Box: A Formative and Evaluability Assessment of Cross-sectoral Approaches for Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence


Re-assessing the Reliability and Validity of the North Carolina Department of Public Safety’s Risk and Needs Assessment for Offenders
Reducing recidivism and improving outcomes among probationers with mental illnesses: Combining mental health probation with supported employment

Recent Publications

Probation Officers’ and Supervisors’ Perspectives on Critical Resources for Implementing Specialty Mental Health Probation.

Variation in Criminogenic Risks by Mental Health Symptom Severity: Implications for Mental Health Services and Research

Using the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research to examine implementation determinants of specialty mental health probation: Results from a hybrid efficacy-implementation study.

Using statewide administrative data and brief mental health screening to estimate the prevalence of mental illness among probationers.

Probationers with severe mental illness: Probation officers’ perceptions of supervision challenges across rural and urban settings.

Presentations, Workshops and Media

Leadership and Strategies for Scale-up: A Case Study of Specialty Mental Health Probation in NC

Prosocial Networks of Adults with Serious Mental Illnesses on Probation

Using Process Measures to Improve Mental Health Screening in County Detention

Acceptability of an Implementation Strategy: Clinical Case Consultation for Specialty Mental Health Probation Officers

Nationwide probation approaches to supervising adults with mental illnesses


SOWO 570

Social Work Practice with Organizations and Communities



SOWO 712

Research and Evaluation


Advanced Standing, MSW

SOWO 810

Evaluation of Social Work Interventions



SOWO 875

Interorganizational and Community-Level Theory and Practice



SOWO 941

Doctoral Teaching Practicum