Nextgenforensic at ATSA 2014: Caoilte Ó Ciardha

Caoilte Ó Ciardha

I always come back from the ATSA conference feeling refreshed and motivated. Connecting with peers and friends sparks new ideas and a fresh enthusiasm for research. After returning from #ATSA2014, I was also fortunate enough to present for an inspiring group of PhD students at the Dutch-Flemish Experimental Psychopathology Postgraduate School, feeling additionally motivated as a result. I’ve included below a summary of my contributions at ATSA.

Poster: Validity of the Screening Scale for Pedophilic Interest

Leslie Helmus, Michael Seto, and I recently published a paper on the Screen Scale for Pedophilic Interest (SSPI). We took the key messages from this paper and presented them as a poster at ATSA. If you use this scale it’s worth checking out our paper here, as we go into a lot more detail, including what happens when you have missing data but still want to calculate the SSPI. However, the poster below has most of the main points. Our findings help establish further support for the SSPI as a useful quick-and-dirty estimator of paedophilic interest.

Poster ATSA 2014

Discussant: Factors Influencing Multiple Perpetrating Sexual Offending

Being asked to be a discussant in a symposium is a daunting privilege. What if the talks are poor? What if I can’t make sense of them, or I find myself distracted and miss something vital? Fortunately, the three talks in the session on Multiple Perpetrator Rape (MPR) by Emma Alleyne, Leigh Harkins, and Miriam Wijkman were thoroughly engaging. Each talk looked at the phenomenon of MPR from distinct angles. Miriam’s work examined group sexual offending committed by juvenile females, Emma’s focused on the finding that there is a relationship between collective narcissism (but not individual narcissism) and self-reported MPR proclivity. Leigh spoke about malleability of perceptions of sexual coercion depending on the influence of peers/confederates. Taken together, I saw the talks as demonstrating a growing body of quality research on MPR. This is an area potentially seen as niche by the wider sexual offending literature, but based on some eye-opening prevalence statistics cited by Leigh should certainly not be considered niche in terms of the scale of sexual violence committed by more than one offender. Indeed, this research is of value to those interested in lone perpetrator rape as it may offer insights into the social context of rape and sexual assault, regardless of the number of final perpetrators.

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