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University of Connecticut Health Center Marijuana Treatment Study

Free Confidential Marijuana Treatment

The Marijuana Treatment Project IV is a research project funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse. The goal of this study is to determine which of the four treatments described below is most effective for treating marijuana dependence. Those who participate will be assigned to one of the treatments by a random process (like the flip of a coin).

Each treatment will involve nine weekly individual outpatient sessions with an expert counselor. Each treatment session will last about one hour The goal of all of these treatments is to help you quit using marijuana.

Regardless of which treatment you are assigned to, prior to starting treatment you will be asked to record information about your thoughts, feelings, and marijuana use about six times per day for 14 days using a cell phone. This information will be used to understand the many factors that influence marijuana use.

  • Treatment 1
    Standard Motivational Enhancement-Cognitive Behavioral (SMET-CB). In this treatment you and the therapist discuss your marijuana problem and the reasons why you might want to quit. Treatment will include discussion of thoughts, feelings and behaviors related to drug use, practice exercises in the treatment session, and practice assignments to be accomplished between treatment sessions. There are sessions on dealing with thoughts of using marijuana, how to refuse drugs if offered, how to talk with others, managing anger, increasing the number of pleasant activities in your life, and handling emergency situations that sometime lead to drug use. People in this treatment are also taught problem-solving skills to help them deal with difficult situations in everyday life.
  • Treatment 2
    Standard Motivational Enhancement-Cognitive Behavioral with Contingency Management (SMET-CB-CM). This treatment is exactly like the first, except that in addition to learning skills, participants assigned to this condition will be eligible to win prizes if they are able to attend treatment or present a clean urine specimen at treatment sessions. This aspect of the treatment, contingency management, is intended to increase your motivation.
  • Treatment 3
    Individualized Assessment and Treatment Program (IATP). In this treatment the therapist will use detailed recordings of your thoughts, feelings, behaviors, and situations that were recorded prior to treatment to determine exactly what is contributing to your marijuana use, and how best to help you keep from using marijuana. Treatment sessions will focus on analyzing your strengths and weaknesses, and helping you to develop and use the skills that will work best for you. This treatment is thus tailored specifically to your patterns of marijuana use.
  • Treatment 4
    Individualized Assessment and Treatment plus Contingency Management (IATP-CM). This treatment will proceed exactly like the third treatment, except that you will have the ability to draw from a fishbowl to win rewards for having negative urine drug tests at treatment sessions. The schedule for earning draws from the fishbowl in this treatment would be the same as that for the second treatment, above. 

Photo of Mark Litt, Ph.D.Mark Litt, Ph.D.

Principal Investigator

IRB#: 12-174-3

This research is funded by NIDA, the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

Man smoking


Kara Dion
UConn Health
263 Farmington Avenue Farmington, CT 06030-3944

Phone: 866-895-5727 (toll-free)