risk assessment is used to predict future crimes and criminal behaviors; it also analyzes the likelihood of an offender committing an offense. The purpose of this paper is to identify two standardized assessment that can predict criminal behaviors and differentiate between each assessment. The two assessments that I chose are actuarial and clinical assessment.
Risk assessment, focuses on the structural method used in the actuarial data and structured test and rating instrument. Actuarial assessment is the data collected, in the used to gathered and entered into the pre-existing equation (Otto, 2000).
This assessment utilized the approximation of relatively probability that an individual will engage in future violence (Tardiff & Hughes, 2011).
Actuarial approaches risk assessment prohibits, and minimizes, the role of judgment by the mental health professional.
Actuarial assessment tools can be lists of factors that are statistically recognized to be related to offending. For instance, offenders who are young tend to be more likely to re-offend. A reason could be the age or the ethical background because these are often measured statistically based risk factor.
According to John Howard Society of Alberta (2000) Actuarial risk assessment focuses primarily on static (unchangeable) factors that influence recidivism. Many studies have been conducted in finding the static risk factor with the strongest influence on general recidivism (relapse into criminal behavior).
Since the organization of the first police departments, whose purpose is to react to crime as it occurs, there has been interest devoted to the study of crime and criminal activity which is now known as criminology. Over time this field of study has developed into a broad and highly interdisciplinary field. Based upon theories old and new, and through the cooperation of the many disciplines ...
There are numerous tool that help identify whether or not an offender will repeat an offense such as; Violence Risk Appraisal Guide (VRAG), the Statistical Information on Recidivism (SIR) scale, Static 99 and the Sex Offender Need Assessment Rating (SONAR).
Each tool measure and analyze the occurrence of recidivism of a criminal offender.
The strength of actuarial approaches to risk assessment includes the assumption of high reliability and known error rates. For instance, sex offenders, sexual offence recidivism is more common among offenders who have prior sexual offences, one or more boy victims, victims who are not family members, and who have shown a sexual preference for children (John Howard Society of Alberta, 2000).
A large number of studies to date suggest that actuarial formulas perform as well as or better than clinical judgment across a number of decisional tasks (Otto, 2000).
The limitations of actuarial approach indicate a firm adherence in preventing psychologist from looking at other information that may be relevant to the information gathered.
Clinical assessment requires the psychologist to collect and process information that is gained during a clinical evaluation. According to Otto (2000), clinical judgment is still involved, the data on which the judgments are based on some predictive value and should be uniform across examiners using this structured approach.
Clinical method uses clinical data obtained from an interview of the patient and collateral sources about current or past violence (Tardiff & Hughes, 2011).