The endorsement of cognitive distortions: comparing child pornography offenders and contact sex offenders

Merdian, Hannah L., Curtis, Cate, Thakker, Jo , Wilson, Nick and Boer, Doug (2014) The endorsement of cognitive distortions: comparing child pornography offenders and contact sex offenders. Psychology, Crime & Law, 20 (10). pp. 971-993. ISSN 1068-316X

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Item Type:Article
Item Status:Live Archive


This study examined the endorsement of cognitive distortions in child pornography
offenders (CPOs), using an established assessment tool, the Abel and Becker
Cognition Scale. The scale was expanded to include cognitions specific to child
pornography offending, extracted from Howitt and Sheldon’s Children and Sexual
Activities Inventory (C&SA). Three samples of CPOs, child sex offenders and
offenders with both offence types responded to the cognition items. An exploratory
Principal Component Analysis suggested six main components of the scale. CPOs
were significantly less likely to endorse these statements in general, and this was more
pronounced on items that project blame onto the child or other people, describe a need
for power and consider children as sexually active. The statements extracted from
C&SA did not differentiate between the groups. These findings are discussed under
consideration of the relationship between cognitive distortions and contact sex
offending, and in reference to the general criticism concerning the definition and
appropriate measurement of cognitive distortions

Keywords:oaemailed, Child pornography, Child sexual abuse, Cognitive distortions, Sexual abuse, NotOAChecked
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C890 Psychology not elsewhere classified
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Psychology
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ID Code:13903
Deposited On:09 May 2014 09:14

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