Tablet Computers and Forensic and Correctional Psychological Assessment: A Randomized Controlled Study

Christopher King, Kirk Heilbrun, Na YoungKim, Kellie McWilliams, Sarah Phillips, Jessie Barbera, Ralph Fretz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Mobile computing technology presents various possibilities and challenges for psychological assessment. Within forensic and correctional psychology, assessment of justice-involved persons facilitated by such technology has not been empirically examined. Accordingly, this randomized controlled experiment involved administering questionnaires about risk-needs, treatment readiness, and computerized technology opinions to a large (N = 212) and diverse sample of individuals under custodial correctional supervision using either a tablet computer or traditional paper-and-pencil materials. Results revealed that participants in the paper-and-pencil condition completed the packet of questionnaires faster but omitted items more frequently. Older participants and those with lower levels of education tended to take longer to complete the tablet-administrated measures. The tablet format was rated as more usable irrespective of demographic and personal characteristics, and most participants across the 2 conditions indicated that they would prefer to use computerized technology to complete psychological testing. Administration format did not have a clear effect on attitudes toward correctional rehabilitation services. Noteworthy for researchers is the substantial time saved and absence of practical problems with the tablet condition. Implications for practitioners include the general usability of the devices, their appeal to incarcerated persons, and the potential for tablets to facilitate clinical and administrative tasks with corrections clients. Considering the novel nature of this study, its promising results, and its limitations, future research in this area is warranted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)468-477
Number of pages10
JournalLaw and Human Behavior
Volume41
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2017

Fingerprint

Handheld Computers
Tablets
Psychology
Technology
human being
questionnaire
Social Justice
level of education
General Practitioners
supervision
rehabilitation
appeal
Rehabilitation
psychology
justice
Research Personnel
Demography
Education
Equipment and Supplies
Controlled

Keywords

  • correctional psychology
  • data collection
  • digital technology
  • forensic assessment
  • tablet computer

Cite this

King, C., Heilbrun, K., YoungKim, N., McWilliams, K., Phillips, S., Barbera, J., & Fretz, R. (2017). Tablet Computers and Forensic and Correctional Psychological Assessment: A Randomized Controlled Study. Law and Human Behavior, 41(5), 468-477. https://doi.org/10.1037/lhb0000245
King, Christopher ; Heilbrun, Kirk ; YoungKim, Na ; McWilliams, Kellie ; Phillips, Sarah ; Barbera, Jessie ; Fretz, Ralph. / Tablet Computers and Forensic and Correctional Psychological Assessment : A Randomized Controlled Study. In: Law and Human Behavior. 2017 ; Vol. 41, No. 5. pp. 468-477.
@article{14bf47adb9934d6d9ecafb9c75637b36,
title = "Tablet Computers and Forensic and Correctional Psychological Assessment: A Randomized Controlled Study",
abstract = "Mobile computing technology presents various possibilities and challenges for psychological assessment. Within forensic and correctional psychology, assessment of justice-involved persons facilitated by such technology has not been empirically examined. Accordingly, this randomized controlled experiment involved administering questionnaires about risk-needs, treatment readiness, and computerized technology opinions to a large (N = 212) and diverse sample of individuals under custodial correctional supervision using either a tablet computer or traditional paper-and-pencil materials. Results revealed that participants in the paper-and-pencil condition completed the packet of questionnaires faster but omitted items more frequently. Older participants and those with lower levels of education tended to take longer to complete the tablet-administrated measures. The tablet format was rated as more usable irrespective of demographic and personal characteristics, and most participants across the 2 conditions indicated that they would prefer to use computerized technology to complete psychological testing. Administration format did not have a clear effect on attitudes toward correctional rehabilitation services. Noteworthy for researchers is the substantial time saved and absence of practical problems with the tablet condition. Implications for practitioners include the general usability of the devices, their appeal to incarcerated persons, and the potential for tablets to facilitate clinical and administrative tasks with corrections clients. Considering the novel nature of this study, its promising results, and its limitations, future research in this area is warranted.",
keywords = "correctional psychology, data collection, digital technology, forensic assessment, tablet computer",
author = "Christopher King and Kirk Heilbrun and Na YoungKim and Kellie McWilliams and Sarah Phillips and Jessie Barbera and Ralph Fretz",
year = "2017",
month = "10",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1037/lhb0000245",
language = "English",
volume = "41",
pages = "468--477",
journal = "Law and Human Behavior",
issn = "0147-7307",
publisher = "Springer New York",
number = "5",

}

King, C, Heilbrun, K, YoungKim, N, McWilliams, K, Phillips, S, Barbera, J & Fretz, R 2017, 'Tablet Computers and Forensic and Correctional Psychological Assessment: A Randomized Controlled Study', Law and Human Behavior, vol. 41, no. 5, pp. 468-477. https://doi.org/10.1037/lhb0000245

Tablet Computers and Forensic and Correctional Psychological Assessment : A Randomized Controlled Study. / King, Christopher; Heilbrun, Kirk; YoungKim, Na; McWilliams, Kellie; Phillips, Sarah; Barbera, Jessie; Fretz, Ralph.

In: Law and Human Behavior, Vol. 41, No. 5, 01.10.2017, p. 468-477.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Tablet Computers and Forensic and Correctional Psychological Assessment

T2 - A Randomized Controlled Study

AU - King, Christopher

AU - Heilbrun, Kirk

AU - YoungKim, Na

AU - McWilliams, Kellie

AU - Phillips, Sarah

AU - Barbera, Jessie

AU - Fretz, Ralph

PY - 2017/10/1

Y1 - 2017/10/1

N2 - Mobile computing technology presents various possibilities and challenges for psychological assessment. Within forensic and correctional psychology, assessment of justice-involved persons facilitated by such technology has not been empirically examined. Accordingly, this randomized controlled experiment involved administering questionnaires about risk-needs, treatment readiness, and computerized technology opinions to a large (N = 212) and diverse sample of individuals under custodial correctional supervision using either a tablet computer or traditional paper-and-pencil materials. Results revealed that participants in the paper-and-pencil condition completed the packet of questionnaires faster but omitted items more frequently. Older participants and those with lower levels of education tended to take longer to complete the tablet-administrated measures. The tablet format was rated as more usable irrespective of demographic and personal characteristics, and most participants across the 2 conditions indicated that they would prefer to use computerized technology to complete psychological testing. Administration format did not have a clear effect on attitudes toward correctional rehabilitation services. Noteworthy for researchers is the substantial time saved and absence of practical problems with the tablet condition. Implications for practitioners include the general usability of the devices, their appeal to incarcerated persons, and the potential for tablets to facilitate clinical and administrative tasks with corrections clients. Considering the novel nature of this study, its promising results, and its limitations, future research in this area is warranted.

AB - Mobile computing technology presents various possibilities and challenges for psychological assessment. Within forensic and correctional psychology, assessment of justice-involved persons facilitated by such technology has not been empirically examined. Accordingly, this randomized controlled experiment involved administering questionnaires about risk-needs, treatment readiness, and computerized technology opinions to a large (N = 212) and diverse sample of individuals under custodial correctional supervision using either a tablet computer or traditional paper-and-pencil materials. Results revealed that participants in the paper-and-pencil condition completed the packet of questionnaires faster but omitted items more frequently. Older participants and those with lower levels of education tended to take longer to complete the tablet-administrated measures. The tablet format was rated as more usable irrespective of demographic and personal characteristics, and most participants across the 2 conditions indicated that they would prefer to use computerized technology to complete psychological testing. Administration format did not have a clear effect on attitudes toward correctional rehabilitation services. Noteworthy for researchers is the substantial time saved and absence of practical problems with the tablet condition. Implications for practitioners include the general usability of the devices, their appeal to incarcerated persons, and the potential for tablets to facilitate clinical and administrative tasks with corrections clients. Considering the novel nature of this study, its promising results, and its limitations, future research in this area is warranted.

KW - correctional psychology

KW - data collection

KW - digital technology

KW - forensic assessment

KW - tablet computer

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85021730317&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1037/lhb0000245

DO - 10.1037/lhb0000245

M3 - Article

C2 - 28661170

AN - SCOPUS:85021730317

VL - 41

SP - 468

EP - 477

JO - Law and Human Behavior

JF - Law and Human Behavior

SN - 0147-7307

IS - 5

ER -