Approaches to developing OPB formulations
Jones, Lawrence F.
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This chapter discusses the offense paralleling behavior model and how it may be incorporated in forensic psychology practice when working with offenders. The model's use has been used for such tasks as risk assessment for recidivism and intervention to prevent re-offending. Offence paralleling behaviour (OPB) is potentially useful for developing formulations relating to risk and for devising interventions targeting idiographically identified criminogenic needs. Clinicians use formulation all the time but may not systematize the way in which they do this. There is an all too common occurrence of practitioners unthinkingly seeing all behaviour as offence paralleling and this needs to be addressed. Recent work on case formulation highlights concerns about the validity and reliability of formulation that have been largely overlooked historically. In this chapter, it is argued that case formulation procedures are similar to qualitative methodologies and that strategies developed to address validity and reliability in qualitative research can be profitably used for the generation of hypotheses in case formulation. Single case methodology can then be used for more systematic exploration of these hypotheses. Practitioners increasingly acknowledge that there are problems with a mechanical reliance on actuarial instruments in risk management. This kind of approach is based on group data and is less helpful for predicting the behaviour of individuals. Recent developments in risk assessment reaffirm the utility of case formulation in risk assessment. The OPB paradigm offers a framework for case formulation. As discussed in Jones, there are problems with reconviction based actuarial assessments, primarily because the reconviction rate does not necessarily index actual rate of offending. This is essentially a problem with construct validity of actuarial assessments. While it cannot be used to make probabilistic statements about risk, OPB offers a useful approach to identifying risk-relevant current behaviour and significant possible risk events. OPB is also clinically relevant and helps to make causal hypotheses about the links between change in current context and possible future performance. Jones identified the utility of Kohlenberg and Tsai's functional analytic psychotherapy (FAP) as an integrative behavioural model for developing OPB formulations. Many interventions addressing offending have focused primarily on developing insight and skills; Kohlenberg and Tsai's work highlights the importance of working on current behaviour reflecting the presenting problem or any change away from it. The OPB paradigm proposes a radical refocus of intervention towards working with offence and change-relevant behaviour in the here and now as well as exploring the past. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved)(chapter)