Protective Factors in Forensic Risk Assessment: A Survey of Current Practices and Professionals’ Attitudes
Title: Protective Factors in Forensic Risk Assessment: A Survey of Current Practices and Professionals’ Attitudes
Description: Historically, the practice of assessing violence and reoffending risk has almost exclusively involved looking at a person's deficits, but over the last two decades many professionals have argued that including strengths in risk assessments allows for a more balanced determination of risk. Within the field of forensic psychology, an individual’s strengths or positive attributes that reduce their risk of future offending are typically referred to as protective factors. The present study uses a survey design to examine professionals’ risk assessment practices and their attitudes regarding the inclusion of protective factors in risk assessment instruments. This survey was developed through a review of research on protective factors and violence risk assessment (de Ruiter & Nicholls, 2011; Viljoen et al., 2010; Wanamaker et al., 2018). The anticipated sample size is 150 participants. The aims of this study are to (1) Determine current practices regarding the use of protective factors in predicting violence risk; (2) Discover any barriers that prevent professionals from using risk assessment tools that include protective factors; (3) Examine professionals’ attitudes towards protective factors
International professionals working in forensic psychology related professions (psychologists, psychiatrists, psychiatric nurses) who conduct risk assessments.
Participation in our study takes roughly 15-20 minutes and involves completing an anonymous online survey.
Location: online - Burnaby, B.C.
Project lead: Samuel Matthew, Supervisor: Ron Roesch
Study Dates: October 1, 2023 to December 31, 2023