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NCJ Number: 49085 Find in a Library
Title: PSYCHOLOGIST'S ROLE ON A NEW ZEALAND PRISON CLASSIFICATION COMMITTEE
Journal: INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF CRIMINOLOGY AND PENOLOGY  Volume:6  Issue:2  Dated:(MAY 1978)  Pages:185-190
Author(s): G R WARDLAW; P J MILLIER
Corporate Author: Academic Press Ltd
United Kingdom
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 6
Sponsoring Agency: Academic Press Ltd
London Nw1,, England
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United Kingdom
Annotation: TO EXAMINE THE UTILITY OF INCLUDING PSYCHOLOGISTS ON A PRISON CLASSIFICATION COMMITTEE, PRECLASSIFICATION INTERVIEWS WERE CONDUCTED WITH A TOTAL OF 317 INMATES IN A MEDIUM SECURITY NEW ZEALAND PRISON.
Abstract: INTERVIEWS WERE CONDUCTED DURING TWO STUDY PERIODS BY FIVE PSYCHOLOGISTS, TWO OF WHOM SAT ON THE PRISON CLASSIFICATION COMMITTEE. DATA WERE COLLECTED ON THE PERCENTAGE OF CASES RECOMMENDED FOR SOME SORT OF PSYCHOLOGICAL INTERVENTION AND ON THE DEGREE OF AGREEMENT BETWEEN PLACEMENT RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE PSYCHOLOGISTS AND SUBSEQUENT PLACEMENT BY THE COMMITTEE. A LARGE RANGE WAS FOUND IN THE FREQUENCY WITH WHICH INDIVIDUAL PSYCHOLOGISTS RECOMMEND TREATMENT: DURING PERIOD 1 THE RANGE WAS 22 TO 53 PERCENT WITH AN AVERAGE OF 35 PERCENT; FOR PERIOD 2 FREQUENCY RANGED FROM 13 PERCENT TO 60 PERCENT WITH A TOTAL AVERAGE OF 41 PERCENT OF THE INMATES BEING RECOMMENDED FOR INTERVENTION. PERCENTAGE OF AGREEMENT BETWEEN INDIVIDUAL PSYCHOLOGIST'S RECOMMENDATIONS AND THE COMMITTEE REGARDING INMATE PLACEMENT RANGED FROM 56 TO 86 PERCENT FOR PERIOD 1 (79 PERCENT OVERALL AGREEMENT RATE) AND 38 TO 91 PERCENT FOR PERIOD 2 (71 PERCENT RATE OF AGREEMENT). THE WIDE RANGE IN FREQUENCIES OF RECOMMENDATIONS FOR TREATMENT INDICATE A LACK OF CLEARLY DEFINED CRITERIA FOR MAKNG TREATMENT RECOMMENDATIONS. MOREOVER, TREATMENT RECOMMENDATIONS TENDED TO BE COUCHED IN BROAD OR VAGUE TERMS WHICH WERE OF LITTLE HELP TO THE CLASSIFICATION COMMITTEE. THE PERCENTAGE OF INMATES RECOMMENDED FOR TREATMENT AVERAGED 37 PERCENT FOR THE TOTAL POPULATION, SUGGESTING THAT PRECLASSIFICATION INTERVIEWS WITH ALL INMATES ARE PROBABLY UNNECESSARY AND INEFFICIENT. THE WIDE RANGE IN AGREEMENT RATES MAY IN PART BE ATTRIBUTABLE TO THE LACK OF CLEARLY DEFINED CLASSIFICATION AND POLICY CRITERIA AND/OR TO THE REALIZATION ON THE PART OF THE PSYCHOLOGIST THAT CLASSIFICATIONS WERE ULTIMATELY ADMINISTRATIVE DECISIONS. FINDINGS STRONGLY QUESTION THE UTILITY OF PSYCHOLOGIST INVOLVEMENT IN PRISON CLASSIFICATION DECISIONMAKING PROCESSES. (JAP)
Index Term(s): Correctional institutions (adult); Corrections management; Decisionmaking; Diagnostic and reception processing; Evaluative research; Inmate Programs; Needs assessment; New Zealand; Psychological evaluation
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=49085

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