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Therapeutic Approaches with High Psychopathy Sexual Offending Populations: Evidence, Issues, and Practice Implications 

Mark Olver


Despite being a notoriously challenging population to treat, a growing body of research has provided increasing support that individuals with psychopathic traits can make risk-relevant changes from evidence informed programs. This half day workshop provides a review and discussion of treatment issues and approaches with psychopathic sexual offenders to promote client retention in treatment and minimize attrition. Practical research findings to illustrate clinical applications will be presented and information and guidelines for working clinically with this challenging population will be provided. Participants will also have an opportunity to discuss their own clinical cases.   


Mark Olver is Professor and Registered Doctoral Psychologist in the Clinical Psychology Program at the University of Saskatchewan, Canada, where he is involved in graduate and undergraduate research supervision, teaching, administration, clinical training, and applied forensic research. Prior to his academic appointment, Mark worked as a clinical psychologist in various capacities, including providing assessment, treatment, and consultation services for young offenders in the Saskatoon Health Region and for adult federal offenders in the Correctional Service of Canada. He has published over 170 journal articles and book chapters and his research interests include risk assessment and correctional treatment, justice involved youth, psychopathy, variations in human sexuality, and the evaluation of therapeutic change. He is the co-developer of the Violence Risk Scale-Sexual Offense version (VRS-SO) and the Violence Risk Scale-Youth Sexual Offense version (VRS-YSO) and he provides training and consultation services internationally in the assessment and treatment of high psychopathy, sexual, and violent offending populations.