Research Article
Volume 9 Issue 2 - 2020
Mean Score Comparisons on the ASEBA Youth Self-Report between a Sample of Adjudicated Delinquent Youths Evaluated for Legal Disposition and the Normative Sample of Non-Clinically Referred Male Adolescents
Robert A Semel*
Licensed Psychologist, Brooklyn, NY, USA
*Corresponding Author: Robert A. Semel, Licensed Psychologist, Brooklyn, NY, USA.
Received: December 23, 2019; Published: January 11, 2020




Abstract

Forensic mental health practitioners who evaluate youth in a context of juvenile delinquency proceedings typically employ a comprehensive multi-method, multi-informant assessment approach that often includes clinical assessment and risk assessment measures and behavioral rating scales in addition to clinical interview and information obtained from parent/guardian and court-related sources. The Achenbach System of Empirically Based Assessment (ASEBA) forms provide for multiple informant ratings of the youth by sources that include youth, parent and teacher. In practice, parent and/or teacher ratings are not always available during the course of juvenile delinquency evaluations. An archived data set of ASEBA Youth Self-Report test scores of juvenile delinquents who were being evaluated for disposition/sentencing purposes (n = 83) was compared with the normative test scores of non-clinically referred male youths. Mean score comparisons revealed significantly higher test scores in the juvenile delinquent sample on the broad-band Externalizing Scale, and on the Rule-Breaking Behavior, Aggressive Behavior, and Withdrawn/Depressed syndrome scales, as well as on the DSM-Oriented Oppositional Defiant Problems and Conduct Problems scales. These findings suggest, overall, that juvenile delinquent youth who were being evaluated for legal disposition/sentencing purposes reported more problems than are typically reported by boys aged 11 to 18, particularly in the broad domain of externalizing behavior problems, including rule-breaking behavior and problems of an aggressive nature, and also in the area of withdrawn or depressed behavior. Implications of these findings for evaluation of youth in the juvenile delinquency assessment context are discussed.

Keywords: Achenbach System of Empirically Based Assessment (ASEBA); Juvenile Delinquent; Rule-Breaking Behavior; Aggressive Behavior

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Citation: Robert A Semel. “Mean Score Comparisons on the ASEBA Youth Self-Report between a Sample of Adjudicated Delinquent Youths Evaluated for Legal Disposition and the Normative Sample of Non-Clinically Referred Male Adolescents”. EC Psychology and Psychiatry 9.2 (2020): 01-09.

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