This study examined the moderating effects of IQ and academic skills in the relationship between dual diagnosis (i.e., co-occurring psychiatric and substance use disorders) and court-involved, non-incarcerated (CINI) juveniles’ detention placement at 12 months post court evaluation. CINI juveniles who underwent a court clinic forensic mental health evaluation (N = 249) completed a battery of assessments targeting demographic information, psychiatric symptoms, and cognitive/academic functioning (i.e., Kaufman Brief Intelligence Test (KBIT-2), Wide Range Achievement Test (WRAT-4)). Previous research demonstrated the predictive ability of co-occurring psychiatric and substance use disorders on CINI juveniles’ recidivism (Tolou-Shams et al., 2014). While we expected that lower IQ scores and/or weak academic skills would moderate dually diagnosed juveniles’ risk of detention, we only found a weak impact for low math computation abilities. These data have important implications for school- or community-based preventative and interventional programs to offset legal involvement and its associated consequences for at-risk youth.
McWilliams, Melissa, "The Role of Intellectual and Academic Abilities in Detention Placement among Dually-Diagnosed Juvenile Offenders" (2015). Psychology Theses. 23.