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Referrers' views of structured professional judgement risk assessment of sexual offenders: A qualitative study

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    Rights statement: © Referrers' views of structured professional judgement risk assessment of sexual offenders : A qualitative study. / Judge, J.; Quayle, E.; O'Rourke, S.; Russell, K.; Darjee, R. In: Journal of Sexual Aggression, 01.01.2013.

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)94-109
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of Sexual Aggression
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2013


The Risk for Sexual Violence Protocol is a structured professional judgement (SPJ) tool that aids risk assessment of sexual violence. It is widely used internationally. The aim of this study was to explore the clinical practice of SPJ risk assessment and risk management through qualitative analysis of the accounts of users of these assessments. Questionnaires and semi-structured interviews were conducted with a sample of 31 criminal justice professionals in southeast Scotland. The participants' accounts were explored using the framework method. Five themes emerged from this analysis: informing risk management; confirming what was known and giving weight; understanding personality; treatment; and the usefulness and limitations of risk assessment. The participants reported that the assessments were influential with respect to risk management. The study revealed some important implications for service development. The authors suggest possible future use of the framework method in research investigating the risk assessment of sexual violence.

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