Development and case series validation of the Estimated Risk for Internet Child Sexual Offending (ERICSO)
: an assessment tool for internet child abuse material (I/CAM) offenders

  • Catherine Garrington

Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis


Internet Child Abuse Material (I/CAM) offences present serious consequences to child safety in the global community. There are limited risk assessment tools available for use with I/CAM offenders, a specific cohort of sexual offenders. This research presents the development and case series validation of an integrated assessment and treatment model for offenders who use I/CAM, the Estimated Risk of Internet Child Sexual Offending (ERICSO). The ERICSO provides guidance for the risk estimation of I/CAM offenders to assist with quantifying their risk of reoffending and providing individualised, risk-relevant therapy.
The ERICSO was developed through a multi-stage process including a systematic review, a survey of professionals, and a single-user offender case study. Initial validation testing was conducted using a case series analysis, the latter informing a conceptual framework for individually targeted, offence specific treatment for I/CAM offenders. Recognising the diversity and individual differences of I/CAM
offenders, focussed assessment and individualised compassionate and risk relevant therapies may help to reduce recidivism in this cohort of sexual offenders.
In sum, the ERICSO provides guidance for the assessment of I/CAM offenders who may reoffend with online child sexual offences or contact child sexual offences. Born from a history of generational attitudes towards rehabilitation and risk assessment, the launch of the ERICSO presents an exciting opportunity in the risk estimation of I/CAM offenders.
Date of Award1 Jun 2023
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorDouglas Boer (Supervisor), Sally Kelty (Supervisor) & Iain Walker (Supervisor)

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