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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 218325 Find in a Library
Title: Development and Refinement of a Measure of Attitudes Toward Sex Offender Treatment
Journal: Journal of Offender Rehabilitation  Volume:43  Issue:3  Dated:2006  Pages:35-47
Author(s): Dorota Wnuk; Jason E. Chapman; Elizabeth L. Jeglic
Date Published: 2006
Page Count: 13
Type: Test/Measurement
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article describes the development of an instrument for measuring public attitudes toward sex-offender treatment and presents results from the testing of its internal consistency and validity.
Abstract: Of the original pool of 35 items, 15 items were found to function well statistically and theoretically, forming 3 internally consistent factors that captured attitudes toward sex offenders' incapacitation, the ineffectiveness of sex-offender treatment, and the mandated treatment of sex offenders. As anticipated, there was a significant correlation between attitudes toward incapacitation and the ineffectiveness of treatment, but these factors did not correlate with mandated treatment. This suggests that the beliefs that sex offenders should not be treated and that treatment does not work are not systematically linked with attitudes toward mandatory treatment. Future steps for further establishing the reliability and validity of the proposed scale should include an evaluation of its performance in other populations, testing sensitivity to changes that occur through psychoeducational intervention that targets public attitudes and knowledge of sex-offender treatment, and evaluation of the functioning of the rating scale. The sample used to test the scale for assessing public attitudes toward the treatment of sex offenders consisted of 170 undergraduate students at an urban New York City University. The majority of the students were female (68 percent) and Hispanic (43 percent). An initial pool of 35 items was developed on the basis of statements commonly encountered by the authors regarding sex offenders, as well as the modification of items used in other attitudinal scales. The 35 items were placed on a 5-point rating scale. 2 tables and 34 references
Main Term(s): Corrections policies
Index Term(s): Convicted offender incapacitation; Instrument validation; Public Attitudes/Opinion; Public Opinion of Corrections; Sex offender treatment; Sex offenders
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