Adolescents with sexually inappropriate behaviours : background, characteristics and approaches to intervention

Nadine England, Rachel
(2009) Adolescents with sexually inappropriate behaviours : background, characteristics and approaches to intervention. PhD thesis, University of Liverpool.

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The incidence of sexually inappropriate behaviour in adolescents is increasing. Understanding of the nature, incidence and characteristics of the perpetrators of such behaviours is growing; however a validated and conclusive aetiology of sexually inappropriate behaviour in adolescents remains elusive. A specialist project for adolescents with sexually inappropriate behaviours was accessed as a component of a national evaluation project, from where the research developed. It was the first aim of the research to explore the characteristics of a British sample of adolescents with sexually inappropriate behaviours attending a specialised intervention project. A retrospective analysis of case file records of young people was undertaken. A number of characteristics common to previous research were found as were a number contrary. A number of differences were observed between young people convicted and those alleged to have committed sexually inappropriate acts. Intervention for adolescent offenders has seen considerable growth. However, offending continues and adolescents continue to re-offend despite receiving intervention. As a consequence, the second and third aims of the research were to psychometrically assess a sample of adolescents with sexually inappropriate behaviours. The validity of a proposed model of sexually inappropriate behaviour was tested and the efficacy of a specialist intervention project was assessed. Sexually inappropriate young people, non-sexual offenders and non-offenders were comparatively assessed. A small number of statistically significant xi differences were found between the groups. However there were no statistically significant differences found in the majority of assessed areas. The adolescents who participated in the research were a heterogeneous group with differing characteristics and needs. No support was found for the tested model of sexually inappropriate behaviours in adolescents. Comparative analyses of the score results compared at two points in time showed no significant differences in scores after intervention by the specialist intervention project. Research has also acknowledged the need to look beyond the content of offending intervention to how it is delivered. Psychological therapy research has recognised the role and importance of the working alliance between a professional and patient and the concept has began to be explored within research and intervention with adult sexual offenders. The role of the working alliance within youth offending research has received limited research attention. Therefore it was the last aim of the research to explore the concept of a working alliance in youth offending intervention and its impact on successful outcomes. Interviews were conducted with youth offending professionals and young offenders and grounded theory analyses were completed to produce a model of interpretations of the role of the working alliance. The findings suggest that a working alliance exerts some influence on the success of youth offending interventions.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 19 Oct 2023 17:54
Last Modified: 19 Oct 2023 18:01
DOI: 10.17638/03174257
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