Differential correlates to self-report and parent-report of callous-unemotional traits in a sample of juvenile sexual offenders

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The association of callous–unemotional (CU) traits with violence and severe antisocial behavior has led to a recent focus on the association between CU traits and sexual offending behavior. When assessing juveniles with sexual offenses, practice standards recommend that multiple sources of data are considered. However, the differential correlates of parent-report versus self-report of CU traits in juvenile sex offenders have not been investigated. A sample of 94 detained male youth (mean age = 15.22, SD = 1.48) was administered both youth and parent versions of the Inventory of Callous–Unemotional Traits (ICU), a general delinquency risk assessment tool (YLS), and a sexual offending risk assessment tool (J-SOAP-II) to investigate concordance between self-report and parent-report of CU traits as well as association with general and sex-specific risk factors. Both parent-report and self-report of CU traits were significantly related to higher general delinquency risk scores, with parent-report showing stronger correlations than self-report. Both parent-report and self-report were related to sex-specific risk factors. However, only parent-report significantly predicted static sexual risk, while self-report significantly predicted dynamic sexual risk scores. Evidence supports the importance of including both parent- and self-report of CU traits in the comprehensive assessment of sexually offending youth.


Institute for Learning Sciences and Teacher Education

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Journal Article

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