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Assessing and Treating Offenders with Intellectual Disabilities

  • Douglas P. BoerEmail author
  • Jack M. McKnight
  • Ashleigh M. Kinlyside
  • Joyce P. S. Chan
Chapter

Abstract

Despite differences in prevalence estimates, offenders with intellectual disabilities (OIDs) are generally considered to be significantly over-represented in all levels of the criminal justice system in all countries where such data is available. Theoretical models developed to provide an explanatory framework for offending behaviours by non-OIDs generally are applicable (with some alteration) for OIDs, although there are specialized and revised theoretical models which have been developed for specific groups of OIDs (e.g., Counterfeit Deviance for sexual offenders with an intellectual disability). In addition, OIDs have many of the same risk issues and consequent assessment strategies and treatment needs as offenders without intellectual disabilities. Assessment strategies include tests developed for non-OIDs, but cross-validated to use with OIDs and specialized assessment strategies that generally have better results in terms of predictive validity and dynamic risk issues specification. Similarly, treatment of risk-relevant issues often follows general treatment principles (including inclusion in non-OIDs programmes). However, like assessment strategies, treatment attempts are made complicated by the presence of an intellectual disability in OIDs and programmes have also been developed for the treatment of specific groups or issues of OIDs (e.g., specialized sexual offender and anger management programmes) that appear to have better therapeutic outcomes in terms of programme completion and recidivism. Future research in the area of virtual reality to teach risk-relevant skills may enhance such treatment gains.

Keywords

Intellectual disability ARMIDILO-S Risk-Need-Responsivity model Old Me/New Me model SOAPP model 

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Douglas P. Boer
    • 1
    Email author
  • Jack M. McKnight
    • 1
  • Ashleigh M. Kinlyside
    • 1
  • Joyce P. S. Chan
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for Applied Psychology, Faculty of HealthUniversity of CanberraCanberraAustralia

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