Specialized assessment and treatment of adolescent sex offenders

Amanda M. Fanniff, Judith V. Becker

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


The accurate and appropriate assessment and treatment of juvenile sex offenders is necessary for public safety and for the juvenile's own development. A growing body of literature has reported on specialized assessment instruments and treatment strategies for use with juvenile sex offenders. The current article reviews the evidence regarding the reliability and validity of various assessment instruments and outcome research regarding treatments with this population. With regard to assessment, the authors conclude that the most promising area of specialized assessment is risk assessment. With regard to intervention, the authors argue that despite methodological limitations, research on the treatment of juvenile sex offenders suggests that treatments are successful in creating change. Specifically, cognitive behavioral treatment and mulitsystemic therapy have demonstrated decreased recidivism compared to a control group. Recommendations regarding future research for the area and implications with respect to uniqueness of this population are considered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)265-282
Number of pages18
JournalAggression and Violent Behavior
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2006


  • Adolescent sex offenders
  • Specialized assessment
  • Specialized treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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