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An exploratory evaluation of the Ward and Hudson Offending Pathways model with sex offenders who have intellectual disability

Langdon, Peter E., Maxted, Helen, Murphy, Glynis H. (2007) An exploratory evaluation of the Ward and Hudson Offending Pathways model with sex offenders who have intellectual disability. Journal of Intellectual and Developmental Disability, 32 (2). pp. 94-105. ISSN 1366-8250. (doi:10.1080/13668250701364686) (KAR id:2060)

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Background It was predicted that offenders with intellectual disability ( ID) categorised according to Ward & Hudson's ( 1998b) self- regulation theory as having an Approach goal would have higher levels of distorted cognitions, less victim empathy, and a history of more prolific offending compared to those with an Avoidant goal. Offenders categorised as having a Passive strategy were hypothesised to have lower levels of general intellectual functioning, and more known offences and convictions compared to those with an Active strategy.

Method Using a cross- sectional independent groups design, the offence pathways of 34 men with ID who were taking part in group cognitive behavioural therapy were rated by therapists. Participants assigned to each pathway were then compared using measures of sexual knowledge, distorted cognitions, and victim empathy. Cronbach's alpha for the measures was found to be acceptable.

Results Offenders with an Approach goal were found to have higher levels of distorted cognitions and more denial about the negative impact of their offending upon their victims on one measure of distorted cognitions, while on another measure of distorted cognitions there were no differences. There were no differences between Approach and Avoidant offenders in terms of victim empathy, socio- sexual knowledge, severity of offending, and victim type. Offenders with a Passive strategy were found to have lower levels of general intellectual functioning than offenders with an Active strategy, but did not have more known offences and convictions.

Conclusions The findings provide partial support for the usefulness of the Offending Pathways model in understanding the sexual offence processes of men with ID. The difficulties with this study are further discussed, together with the theoretical implications

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1080/13668250701364686
Uncontrolled keywords: sexual offending pathways; self-regulation; intellectual disability; learning disability; sex offenders; child molesters; cognitive distortions; victim empathy
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
Divisions: Divisions > Division for the Study of Law, Society and Social Justice > School of Social Policy, Sociology and Social Research > Tizard
Depositing User: Peter Langdon
Date Deposited: 19 Dec 2007 19:26 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Nov 2021 09:40 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Murphy, Glynis H.:
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