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NCJ Number: 185807 Find in a Library
Title: Offender Assessment: General Issues and Considerations
Journal: Forum on Corrections Research  Volume:12  Issue:2  Dated:May 2000  Pages:14-18
Author(s): James Bonta
Date Published: May 2000
Page Count: 5
Document: HTML|PDF
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: Canada
Annotation: This is an overview of issues and considerations in offender assessment.
Abstract: Most theories of criminal behavior can be grouped into three broad perspectives of criminal conduct: Sociological, Psychopathological, and General Personality and Social Psychological. The article concludes that the General Personality and Social Psychological perspectives encompass factors (dynamic) that best predict criminal behavior. These perspectives emphasize learning attitudes, emotions, and behaviors that lead to criminal conduct. The focus is the individual (like the psychopathological theories), but it is the person's learning experiences that account for crime. It is not so much that the offender is "sick", but that he/she was exposed to situations that rewarded and encouraged antisocial behavior. There are two general approaches to making decisions about recidivism. The clinical method uses subjective and professional judgments to assess the variables deemed important by theory. The structured, actuarial method involves statistical, evidence-based estimates of risk. The article emphasizes the need for further research on assessing responsivity factors and risk-needs factors specific to certain offender groups. Table, notes
Main Term(s): Corrections
Index Term(s): Behavioral science research; Canada; Corrections in foreign countries; Criminality prediction; Dangerousness; Deviance; Personality assessment; Recidivism; Research
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