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Multidisciplinary Child Protection Decision Making About Physical Abuse: Determining Substantiation Thresholds and Biases

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dc.contributor.author Jent, J. F., Eaton, C. K., Knickerbocker, L., Lambert, W. F., Merrick, M. T., & Dandes, S. K.
dc.date.accessioned 2018-05-04T16:29:11Z
dc.date.available 2018-05-04T16:29:11Z
dc.date.issued 2011
dc.identifier.citation Jent, J. F., Eaton, C. K., Knickerbocker, L., Lambert, W. F., Merrick, M. T., & Dandes, S. K. (2011). Multidisciplinary child protection decision making about physical abuse: Determining substantiation thresholds and biases. Children and youth services review, 33(9), 1673-1682. en_US
dc.identifier.uri https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3145416/
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/11212/3821
dc.description.abstract The current study examined the threshold at which multidisciplinary child protection team (CPT) professionals substantiate physical abuse allegations and the extent that they utilize potentially biased constructs in their decision making when presented with the same case evidence. State legal definitions of child maltreatment are broad. Therefore, the burden of interpretation is largely on CPT professionals who must determine at what threshold physical acts by parents surpass corporal discipline and constitute child physical abuse. Biased or subjective decisions may be made if certain case-specific characteristics or CPT professionals’ personal characteristics are used in making physical abuse determinations. Case vignettes with visual depictions of inflicted injuries were sent to CPT professionals in Florida and their substantiation decisions, personal beliefs about corporal discipline, and coercive discipline were collected. Results of the study demonstrated relatively high agreement among professionals across vignettes about what constitutes physical abuse. Further, CPT professionals strongly considered their perceptions of the severity of inflicted injuries in substantiation decisions. Although case specific characteristics did not bias decisions in a systematic way, some CPT professional characteristics influenced the substantiation of physical abuse. Practice implications and future directions of research are discussed. en_US
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.publisher Children and Youth Services Review en_US
dc.subject Multidisciplinary child protection en_US
dc.subject assessment en_US
dc.subject physical abuse en_US
dc.subject decision-making en_US
dc.subject substantiation bias en_US
dc.title Multidisciplinary Child Protection Decision Making About Physical Abuse: Determining Substantiation Thresholds and Biases en_US
dc.type Article en_US


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