Psychological Research in Prisons by Graham J. Towl

By Graham J. Towl

This up to date assortment starts off with an account and research of the position of psychologists in prisons relating to research.Looks on the result of proof established mental methods to operating with prisonersFirst half the publication has its basic specialise in mental overview researchIncludes chapters on mental learn on suicide, bullying, existence sentenced prisoners and employees disease

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However, the most serious inadequacy has to do with the ‘state-ofthe-art’ intervention. ‘Therapy’ included 80 hours of therapy per week with little time given over to either vocational training or recreational pursuits. It included two-week, nude marathon encounter sessions in a self-contained chamber where sustenance was provided through tubes through the walls. There was also the use of drugs such as methedrine, LSD, scopolomine and alcohol. 9 Even by the standards of that time this was extraordinary and to conclude that therapeutic communities do not work or that ‘psychopaths’ are treatment resistant, or that there is an assessment of personality that may identify those who will not benefit from ‘therapy’, is a travesty of science.

16 Research relating solely to health care should go through the recognised National Health Service (NHS) ethical procedures, Multi-Centre Research Ethics Committees (MRECs) or Local Research Ethics Committees (LRECs). These are expert bodies concerned with and accountable for ethical approval of health research. As such applications do not require additional ethical authority. Models for Future Research As alluded to earlier in this chapter, making predictions about the future is a potentially fraught exercise.

It does seem that changing our perception of offenders and ourselves does alter what we do, the way that we do it and the response of those we are trying to change. Treatment programmes in the UK Prison and Probation service that are based on the risk–needs model do now, finally, give some recognition to the need to move away from single interventions and understand offenders as having multiple needs needing multiple interventions. ’ (Harper and Chitty, 2005). The implication of this recent realisation is that we cannot expect to understand the real value of CBT psychological interventions directed at one problem when the outcome is dependent on neglected variables.

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