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‘I’ve changed my life’: Understanding what helps Offenders with a Learning Disability to Avoid Reoffending

Passey, Clare (2014) ‘I’ve changed my life’: Understanding what helps Offenders with a Learning Disability to Avoid Reoffending. Doctoral thesis, Staffordshire University.

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Thesis Abstract
This thesis aims to add to the evidence base regarding offenders with a Learning Disability (LD) living in UK communities. The thesis also aims to enhance the reader’s understanding about why offenders with a LD avoid reoffending. The first paper reviews the current literature on the community-based treatment and support of offenders with a LD. In line with social policy, effective treatment reduces reoffending. Current developments show that effective treatments are long-term Cognitive Behavioural Therapy programmes, innovative treatment components that enhance empathy and skills to problem solve, and community integration. The review highlights issues with a small sample size in the quantitative evaluations of treatment efficacy, which researchers address by stating other measures of change (e.g. community engagement and reductions in support). Throughout the literature, these measures are inconsistent and informal. Therefore, the review outlines a need to use consistent and robust methods to evaluate treatment efficacy, which could include qualitative research. The second paper employs narrative methodology to explore the reasons why, offenders with a LD do and do not reoffend. The research involves interviews with six male offenders living in the community. Analysis and interpretation suggest that offenders with a LD need to have the ability or support to make decisions to avoid reoffending. Offenders with a LD must also have meaningful relationships and engagement in the community, which they fear losing if they reoffend. The outcomes endorse community-based treatments and improving community opportunities for offenders with a LD. The third paper offers a reflective commentary focused on overcoming the barriers to completing a thesis. The barriers relate to the conduct of the literature review and the research. Overall, the thesis provides an insight into what helps offenders with a LD to avoid reoffending, with reference to the evidence base and regard to individual stories.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: C800 Psychology
L300 Sociology
Depositing User: Kim MCGAW
Date Deposited: 26 Feb 2015 11:36
Last Modified: 26 Feb 2015 11:36
URI: http://eprints.staffs.ac.uk/id/eprint/2046

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