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Is Pedophilic Sexual Preference Continuous? A Taxometric Analysis Based on Direct and Indirect Measures

Is Pedophilic Sexual Preference Continuous? A Taxometric Analysis Based on Direct and Indirect... The present study addressed the question of whether deviant sexual preferences for children can be considered a taxon, utilizing data from a multimethod assessment battery. The test battery comprised direct self-report as well as indirect latency-based measures (Implicit Association Tests, viewing time) of deviant sexual preferences for children. In a mixed sample of adult men (N = 304, including sex offenders against children, sex offenders against adults, and controls who were either nonsexual offenders or nonoffenders), 27% of the offenders convicted for child sexual abuse or child pornography charges were identified as a homogeneous and distinct latent class. Additional taxometric analyses corroborated the notion of a pedophilic subgroup. Individuals in this pedophilic group showed elevated scores on measures of deviant sexual preference for children over adults. The offense histories of the individuals from the pedophilic cluster indicated an increased likelihood of pedophilic preference as assessed by a file-based summary index. We interpret the results as evidence for pedophilic sexual preference as a distinct and taxonic clinical construct. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Psychological Assessment American Psychological Association

Is Pedophilic Sexual Preference Continuous? A Taxometric Analysis Based on Direct and Indirect Measures

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Publisher
American Psychological Association
Copyright
© 2013 American Psychological Association
ISSN
1040-3590
eISSN
1939-134X
DOI
10.1037/a0033326
pmid
23815115
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The present study addressed the question of whether deviant sexual preferences for children can be considered a taxon, utilizing data from a multimethod assessment battery. The test battery comprised direct self-report as well as indirect latency-based measures (Implicit Association Tests, viewing time) of deviant sexual preferences for children. In a mixed sample of adult men (N = 304, including sex offenders against children, sex offenders against adults, and controls who were either nonsexual offenders or nonoffenders), 27% of the offenders convicted for child sexual abuse or child pornography charges were identified as a homogeneous and distinct latent class. Additional taxometric analyses corroborated the notion of a pedophilic subgroup. Individuals in this pedophilic group showed elevated scores on measures of deviant sexual preference for children over adults. The offense histories of the individuals from the pedophilic cluster indicated an increased likelihood of pedophilic preference as assessed by a file-based summary index. We interpret the results as evidence for pedophilic sexual preference as a distinct and taxonic clinical construct.

Journal

Psychological AssessmentAmerican Psychological Association

Published: Dec 1, 2013

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