Predictors of treatment response among offenders with learning disability in the London Probation Service

  • Jake Shaw

Student thesis: PsychD

Abstract

This study investigated factors, which are predictive of poor engagement in and non-completion of general and violent offending behavior programmes in the community. Three programmes delivered by the London Probation Trust were investigated. The Thinking Skills Programme (TSP), the Aggression Replacement Training Programme (ART) and The Integrated Domestic Abuse Programme – Accelerated (IDAP-A). The sample comprised all offenders with a requirement to complete one of these programmes across the London area between May 2012 and January 2013 (N=1078). Demographic data as well as participants’ static and dynamic risk scores, criminogenic needs, learning difficulties and the presence of childhood conduct disorder and adult antisocial personality disorder were obtained from the Offender Assessment System (OASys) for all participants at baseline. A subset of participants (N=244) also completed assessments of personality disorder using the Personality Diagnostic Questionnaire 4+ (PDQ4+) and treatment readiness, using the Corrections Victoria Treatment Readiness Questionnaire (CVTRQ). Personality disorder severity levels were also calculated for this sample. At a one-year follow up participants completion status (as completers, non completers and non-starters) was obtained from probation records. Facilitator’s session-by-session ratings of participant’s engagement and understanding scores were also obtained. It was hypothesisied that the presence of more severe personality pathology, learning difficulties, low levels of treatment readiness and higher dynamic risk scores would differentiate completers from non-completers and non-starters. It was also hypothesised that these same variables would be associated with lower ratings of understanding and engagement. The results partially supported these hypotheses. They illustrated that dynamic risk factors and personality variables, primarily including Antisocial Personality Disorder, were among the strongest predictors of attrition and limited engagement and understanding. Learning difficulties and treatment readiness did not emerge as strong predictors. There was considerable variability among the distinct programme types. Implications for future practice and for the often-cited non-completion effect are discussed.
Date of Award2016
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorElias Tsakanikos (Supervisor) & Robert Edelmann (Supervisor)

Cite this

Predictors of treatment response among offenders with learning disability in the London Probation Service
Shaw , J. (Author). 2016

Student thesis: PsychD