• A comparison of static and dynamic assessment of sexual offender risk and need in a treatment context

      Wong, Stephen C. P. (2011)
      The authors investigated the efficacy of static versus dynamic approaches to risk assessment and the validity of the Risk Principle through comparing treatment changes made by high- versus lower-risk offenders. The investigations were carried out using a sample of 321 treated sex offenders followed up for an average 10 years postrelease. Risk was assessed using the Static 99, and treatment change was assessed using the Violence Risk Scale-Sexual Offender version. Actuarially high-risk/ low-change offenders had significantly higher rates of sexual recidivism than similarly high-risk offenders who had demonstrated greater treatment changes. The Static 99 predicted sexual recidivism well among sex offenders with smaller treatment change but demonstrated weaker prediction among offenders with greater treatment change, likely owing, in part, to the static nature of the risk predictors. Implications regarding the dynamic nature of risk and potential utility of incorporating treatment change-related information into sex offender risk assessments are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)
    • A psychometric examination of treatment change in a multisite sample of treated Canadian federal sexual offenders

      Wong, Stephen C. P. (2014)
      In the present study, we examined the degree of change and predictive accuracy of a number of well-known psychological self-report measures intended to identify treatment targets for sexual offenders. Participants included 392 federally incarcerated sexual offenders who participated in low, moderate, or high intensity sexual offender programs offered within penitentiaries under the jurisdiction of the Correctional Service of Canada. These men were followed in the community for an average of 5.42 years postrelease. Very small to moderate pretreatment and posttreatment changes were found on measures of cognitive distortions, aggression/hostility, empathy, loneliness, social intimacy, and sex offender acceptance of responsibility. However, pretreatment and posttreatment scores on these measures frequently demonstrated weak and inconsistent relationships to sexual, violent, and general recidivism. In addition, within-treatment change on these measures bore little relationship to outcome. However, when statistically corrected for pretreatment score the relationship of treatment change to outcome frequently improved, particularly on measures of physical aggression and anger, even after controlling for Static-99R score. Clinical and research implications are discussed regarding the assessment and evaluation of change on psychological risk factors in treated sexual offenders.Copyright PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved.
    • A qualitative process evaluation of electronic session-by-session outcome measurement in child and adolescent mental health services

      Moldavsky, Maria; Marriott, Michael (2014)
      Background: Regular monitoring of patient progress is important to assess the clinical effectiveness of an intervention. Recently, initiatives within UK child and adolescent mental health services (CAMHS) have advocated the use of session-by-session monitoring to continually evaluate the patient's outcome throughout the course of the intervention. However, the feasibility and acceptability of such regular monitoring is unknown. Method: Semi-structured qualitative interviews were conducted with clinicians (n = 10), administrative staff (n = 8) and families (n = 15) who participated in a feasibility study of an electronic session-by-session outcome monitoring tool, (SxS), which is based on the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ). This study took place in three CAMHS clinics in Nottinghamshire. The interview transcripts were thematically analysed. Results: We found clinicians accepted the need to complete outcome measures, particularly valuing those completed by the patient. However, there were some difficulties with engaging clinicians in this practice and in the training offered. Generally, patients were supportive of completing SxS in the waiting room prior to the clinic session and assistance with the process from administrative staff was seen to be a key factor. Clinicians and families found the feedback reports created from SxS to be helpful for tracking progress, facilitating communication and engagement, and as a point of reflection. The use of technology was considered positively, although some technological difficulties hindered the completion of SxS. Clinicians and families appreciated the brevity of SxS, but some were concerned that a short questionnaire could not adequately encapsulate the complexity of the patient's issues. Conclusions: The findings show the need for appropriate infrastructure, mandatory training, and support to enable an effective system of session-by-session monitoring. Our findings indicate that clinicians, administrative staff and young people and their parents/carers would support regular monitoring if the system is easy to implement, with a standard 'clinic-wide' adoption of the procedure, and the resulting data are clinically useful.
    • A systematic review on the effectiveness of sex offender risk assessment tools in predicting sexual recidivism of adult male sex offenders

      Tully, Ruth J. (2013)
      Purpose: This study aimed to systematically review the effectiveness of risk assessment tools in predicting sexual recidivism of adult male offenders.; Background: Sex offender risk assessment aids risk management within the criminal justice system. Some tools follow an actuarial approach and some adopt structured professional judgement. There has not been a systematic review evaluating and comparing the effectiveness of those tools and appraising the overall quality of the primary research.; Methods: Six electronic databases and reference lists of relevant meta-analyses were searched. Three experts were contacted to obtain relevant studies. Inclusion criteria were applied to the identified references and the included studies were quality assessed, using pre-defined criteria, prior to data extraction and synthesis.; Results: Electronic search yielded 4949 hits. Of these, 1419 duplicates, 1 meta-analysis and 3382 irrelevant hits were excluded. 14 publications identified from previous meta-analyses were included. 2 non-English language duplications of publications were excluded. 89 publications that did not meet inclusion criteria and 15 inaccessible publications were excluded. 11 studies that did not meet minimum threshold criteria and 1 study that re-analysed an already included sample were then excluded, leaving 43 publications containing 43 studies.; Conclusions: All included tools demonstrated at least moderate predictive accuracy, with two reporting a large effect size (VRS-SO and SRA), although these two came under much less empirical scrutiny than the others and may have been the subject of developer bias in the research that is available. The VRS-SO was found to have the highest mean quality score, this again being limited by the number of studies and developer bias. The quality of the primary research is variable. More independent high quality research is needed, particularly on structured professional judgement incorporating dynamic risk factors.; Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
    • Abstraction ability and impairment: The barrow hospital sorting test in clinical psychological testing

      Tong, John E. (1955)
      "The current paper describes the use of a modified scoring system for the Sorting test, and the application of the test to a group of psychotic and non-psychotic subjects. The relative difficulty of the subtests is examined, and the relationship of the test scores and diagnostic signs to those of the Wechsler Vocabulary and Similarities Tests, the Raven Matrices test and Rorschach test features, is also described. The effect of age and sex is discussed, and it is shown that the main differential sign (patterning) may be related to Rorschach diagnostic signs. Certain practical issues concerning the use of the test are also touched upon, e.g. its use with severely disturbed patients and those of low intelligence, the possibility of modifications and the question of the test providing information not gained from other tests or clinical examination." (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)
    • Acceptability, reliability, referential distributions and sensitivity to change in the Young Person's Clinical Outcomes in Routine Evaluation (YP-CORE) outcome measure: Replication and refinement

      Evans, Chris (2016)
      Background: Many outcome measures for young people exist, but the choices for services are limited when seeking measures that (a) are free to use in both paper and electronic format, and (b) have evidence of good psychometric properties. Method: Data on the Young Person's Clinical Outcomes in Routine Evaluation (YP-CORE), completed by young people aged 11-16, are reported for a clinical sample (N = 1269) drawn from seven services and a nonclinical sample (N = 380). Analyses report item omission, reliability, referential distributions and sensitivity to change. Results: The YP-CORE had a very low rate of missing items, with 95.6% of forms at preintervention fully completed. The overall alpha was .80, with the values for all four subsamples (11-13 and 14-16 by gender) exceeding .70. There were significant differences in mean YP-CORE scores by gender and age band, as well as distinct reliable change indices and clinically significant change cut-off points. Conclusions: These findings suggest that the YP-CORE satisfies standard psychometric requirements for use as a routine outcome measure for young people. Its status as a free to use measure and the availability of an increasing number of translations makes the YP-CORE a candidate outcome measure to be considered for routine services. Copyright © 2016 Association for Child and Adolescent Mental Health.
    • Actuarial assessment of risk for reoffense among adult sex offenders - Evaluating the predictive accuracy of the Static-2002 and five other instruments

      Langton, Calvin M. (2007)
      This study extended previous research comparing a set of widely employed actuarial risk assessment schemes as well as a new instrument, the Static-2002, in a sample of 468 sex offenders followed for an average of 5.9 years. All of the risk assessment instruments (Violence Risk Appraisal Guide [VRAG], Sex Offender Risk Appraisal Guide [SORAG], Rapid Risk Assessment for Sex Offense Recidivism [RRASOR], Static-99, Static-2002, and Minnesota Sex Offender Screening Tool-Revised [MnSOST-R]) were found to predict the recidivism outcomes for which they were designed. Although significant, indices of accuracy were generally lower than those reported by the developers of these instruments, even under conditions that have been shown to optimize predictive performance. For serious recidivism, the predictive accuracy of the Static-2002 and SORAG was significantly superior to that of the RRASOR, and the SORAG was significantly superior to the MnSOST-R as well. There were no significant differences among instruments in accuracy of predicting sexual recidivism.
    • Advancing observational quality methods for the measurement of forensic psychiatric care

      Robinson, David K. (1996)
      Discusses some of the current problems associated with observational quality measurement. Uses Lerninger's conceptual theory-generating model as the basis of discussion. Puts forward a qualitative approach which breaks away from the traditional methods.
    • An overview: DSPD programme concepts and progress

      Hogue, Todd E. (2003)
      The article focuses on the progress made toward developing services for individuals identified with Dangerous and Severe Personality disorder (DSPD). The article defines the DSPD programme, the structure of the programme and progress made in key areas of work, research and development, assessment and treatment. The background to the programme lies in the limited availability of specialist services for this group. Current mental health legislation can only be used to detain this group if they are considered 'treatable', yet professionals often disagree whether this is possible and this has often resulted in people with these characteristics being excluded from services. Despite the risk that they pose and the problems they face, too often they are not given access to interventions that might protect the public and help them achieve safe and successful re-integration into the community. The Government's proposals for the DSPD Programme are intended both to ensure that the public is protected from some of the most dangerous people in society and provide high quality services to improve their health outcomes and reduce risk. The DSPD Programme has now moved on from the initial work to launch the programme, to its main and longer-term implementation phase. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)
    • Appraising the risk matrix 2000 static sex offender risk assessment tool

      Tully, Ruth J. (2015)
      This critical appraisal explores the reliability and validity of the Risk Matrix 2000 static sex offender risk assessment tool that is widely used in the United Kingdom. The Risk Matrix 2000 has to some extent been empirically validated for use with adult male sex offenders; however, this review highlights that further research into the validity of this static tool with sex offender subgroups or types is necessary in order to improve practical utility. The Risk Matrix 2000 relies on static risk predictors, thus it is limited in scope. This article argues that the addition of dynamic items that have been shown to be predictive of sexual recidivism would further enhance the tool. The paper argues that adding dynamic risk items would fit better with a rehabilitative approach to sex offender risk management and assessment. This would also provide a means by which to effectively plan sex offender treatment and evaluate individual offenders' progress in treatment; however, difficulties remain in identifying and assessing dynamic risk factors of sexual offending and so further research is required.; © The Author(s) 2013.
    • Approaches to developing OPB formulations

      Jones, Lawrence F. (2010)
      This chapter discusses the offense paralleling behavior model and how it may be incorporated in forensic psychology practice when working with offenders. The model's use has been used for such tasks as risk assessment for recidivism and intervention to prevent re-offending. Offence paralleling behaviour (OPB) is potentially useful for developing formulations relating to risk and for devising interventions targeting idiographically identified criminogenic needs. Clinicians use formulation all the time but may not systematize the way in which they do this. There is an all too common occurrence of practitioners unthinkingly seeing all behaviour as offence paralleling and this needs to be addressed. Recent work on case formulation highlights concerns about the validity and reliability of formulation that have been largely overlooked historically. In this chapter, it is argued that case formulation procedures are similar to qualitative methodologies and that strategies developed to address validity and reliability in qualitative research can be profitably used for the generation of hypotheses in case formulation. Single case methodology can then be used for more systematic exploration of these hypotheses. Practitioners increasingly acknowledge that there are problems with a mechanical reliance on actuarial instruments in risk management. This kind of approach is based on group data and is less helpful for predicting the behaviour of individuals. Recent developments in risk assessment reaffirm the utility of case formulation in risk assessment. The OPB paradigm offers a framework for case formulation. As discussed in Jones, there are problems with reconviction based actuarial assessments, primarily because the reconviction rate does not necessarily index actual rate of offending. This is essentially a problem with construct validity of actuarial assessments. While it cannot be used to make probabilistic statements about risk, OPB offers a useful approach to identifying risk-relevant current behaviour and significant possible risk events. OPB is also clinically relevant and helps to make causal hypotheses about the links between change in current context and possible future performance. Jones identified the utility of Kohlenberg and Tsai's functional analytic psychotherapy (FAP) as an integrative behavioural model for developing OPB formulations. Many interventions addressing offending have focused primarily on developing insight and skills; Kohlenberg and Tsai's work highlights the importance of working on current behaviour reflecting the presenting problem or any change away from it. The OPB paradigm proposes a radical refocus of intervention towards working with offence and change-relevant behaviour in the here and now as well as exploring the past. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)(chapter)
    • Are problems prevalent and stable in non-clinical populations? Problems and test-retest stability of a patient-generated measure, PSYCHLOPS (Psychological Outcome Profiles), in a non-clinical student sample

      Evans, Chris (2010)
      In straightened times counselling must evidence the changes it promotes on reputable measures. Patient-generated measures complement nomothetic measures and may be nearer the ethos of counselling in eliciting individuals' problems. Scores from such measures from non-clinical samples are rarely reported, making their test-retest stability uncertain. We report the prevalence and stability of self-reported problems using PSYCHLOPS (Psychological Outcome Profiles) in a non-clinical student population. PSYCHLOPS is a four-item, self-administered, patient-generated instrument. PSYCHLOPS was completed twice, 7-10 days apart. A wide range of problems was reported and showed satisfactory test-retest stability: Pearson, 0.66; Spearman, 0.68; intra-class correlation coefficient, 0.70. This is reassuring as instability would undermine PSYCHLOPS as a sensitive change measure.
    • Assessment of caring and its effects in young people: Development of the Multidimensional Assessment of Caring Activities Checklist (MACA-YC18) and the Positive and Negative Outcomes of Caring Questionnaire (PANOC-YC20) for young carers

      Regel, Stephen (2009)
      Many children, adolescents and young people are involved in caring for parents, siblings, or other relatives who have an illness, disability, mental health problem or other need for care or supervision. The aim was to develop two new instruments for use in research with young carers to assess caring activities and their psychological effects. Two studies are reported. In study 1, 410 young carers were recruited via The Princess Royal Trust for Carers database of UK projects and asked to complete an initial item pool of 42 and 75 questionnaire items to assess caring activities and caring outcomes respectively. In study 2 a further 124 young carers were recruited. Following exploratory principal components analysis in study 1, 18 items were chosen to compose the Multidimensional Assessment of Caring Activities Checklist (MACA-YC18), and 20 items chosen to compose the Positive and Negative Outcomes of Caring Scales (PANOC-YC20). In study 2, normative and convergent validity data on the two instruments are reported. The MACA-YC18 is an 18-item self-report measure that can be used to provide an index of the total amount of caring activity undertaken by the young person, as well as six sub-scale scores for domestic tasks, household management, personal care, emotional care, sibling care and financial/practical care. The PANOC-YC20 is a 20-item self-report measure that can be used to provide an index of positive and negative outcomes of caring.
    • Case formulation in personality disordered offenders - a Delphi survey of professionals

      Vollm, Birgit A. (2014)
      BACKGROUND: Case formulation (CF) integrates information about an individual to conceptualise the factors causing and maintaining their current difficulties. It is a core clinical skill for both psychologists and psychiatrists. The recent UK government Offender Personality Disorder (PD) Strategy proposes a key role of probation staff in CF. Yet, CF in forensic settings has only recently received research attention, and it is unclear how and by whom it ought to be performed.
    • Case formulation in personality disordered offenders: Views from the front line

      Brown, Susan S.; Vollm, Birgit A. (2013)
      Background Case formulation (CF) is a process that provides a psychological understanding of a person's difficulties and results in an intervention plan to address them. CF may be particularly useful in complex cases; yet the evidence base on its application in forensic settings is limited. Nevertheless, CF is a key part of the UK government's strategy for high-risk personality disordered offenders. As part of this strategy, probation staff are expected to carry out CF in order to inform interventions for these offenders. Aims/hypotheses This study sought to access the experience of probation staff of working with personality disordered offenders and their views around their role in the strategy and what challenges and benefits might arise. Methods Three focus groups were carried out, each with 6-7 probation staff. Results Four themes emerged. Firstly, staff reported a lack of personality disorder (PD)-specific training, and the work that they do with PD offenders is hampered by this. Secondly, probation staff experience difficulties when attempting to obtain help for PD offenders, including diagnostic assessments and treatment for those already diagnosed. Thirdly, the work probation staff currently do with offenders covers similar areas as CF but with a different focus. Fourthly, participants welcomed the prospect of PD-specific training but were concerned that they should be appropriately supervised and not left to carry out work for which they feel under-trained. Conclusions Our findings point towards potential benefits in providing probation staff with PD-specific training in order to implement the PD offender strategy. Implications for practice Issues relating to the lack of provision of appropriate treatment and the need for relevant supervision of probation staff conducting CF need to be addressed in order to enhance the successful operation of the strategy. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
    • Case formulation quality checklist: A revision based upon clinicians' views

      McMurran, Mary; Bruford, Sophie (2016)
      Purpose - Evaluations of the impact of case formulation on outcomes for offenders are needed. The quality of case formulations may impact on outcomes, hence one essential aspect in outcome evaluation is quality assessment. A case formulation quality checklist (CFQC) was constructed and showed good reliability and internal consistency. However, feedback from users was the CFCQ could be improved. The purpose of this paper is to ascertain the opinions of professionals who had used the CFQC to provide a basis for its revision. Design/methodology/approach - This was a qualitative study, in which ten professionals who had used the CFQC were asked their views about it. An inductive thematic analysis was used to organise the data. Findings - Seven themes were identified. First, the importance of assessing quality in case formulation; second, the appropriate and comprehensive content of the CFQC; third, the practicality of the CFQC; fourth, validity and reliability issues; fifth, ways to improve the CFQC; sixth, potential as a training tool; seventh, limitations of the use of the CFQC. The CFQC was revised in light of these comments, producing the CFQC-R. Research limitations/implications - The reliability and consistency of the CFQC-R needs to be examined, as does validity, particularly predictive validity. This information will better enable research into whether case formulation improves outcomes for service users, and whether better quality case formulations lead to greater improvements. Practical implications - The CFQC-R may be of value in training and supervising clinicians in constructing case formulations. Originality/value - The CFQC-R is reproduced here so that researchers and practitioners may use the checklist. Copyright © 2016, © Emerald Group Publishing Limited.
    • Case formulation with offenders: What, who, where, when, why and how?

      McMurran, Mary (2013)
      This editorial provides an overview of the current issue of Criminal Behaviour and Mental Health. Articles aim to explore the concept of case formulation, the nature and quality of systemised approaches to it and to consider evidence on its effectiveness. Formulation is not a new concept. In clinical psychology, it was born out of the evolution of the scientist-practitioner model in the 1950s. In this, clinical psychologists apply scientific methods to understand people’s problems and generate hypotheses about what might bring about change in them. Moore and Drennan develop the concept by exploring the practical realities for clinicians in making and using formulation with the sort of complex cases typified by offenders with personality disorder, whether applying the process in health services or other settings. They highlight, among other benefits, the resulting potential for anticipating and managing adverse outcomes and linking steps along the pathway. Haque and Webster offer a complementary approach, showing how highly formal processes of structured professional judgment, according to reliable and valid schemes, can also be part of the family of formulations. Both these introductions show awareness of the centrality of risk assessment and management to the formulation process. Minoudis and colleagues provide data on the reliability and internal consistency of a new checklist to support formulation, which may be particularly helpful to this group, and then use it to evaluate training in the technique. Their finding in respect of a training programme of good face validity is important. Brown and Völlm investigate probation staff views on formulation, identifying both barriers to implementation and the positive aspects of this collaborative approach with offenders. Mappin et al. use multiple sequential functional analyses to bring structure to formulation when intimate partner violence is the presenting problem. Davies et al. conclude by helping us towards a framework for evaluation, considering the sort of variation between cases and circumstances in which formulation may be useful, challenge our dependence only on the easily researched questions and emphasise something that we think comes through as one of the most important themes. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)