Effects of Online Distance Learning on Violence Risk Knowledge and Competencies

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Behavioral health professionals are charged with providing effective outpatient services while addressing patient and public safety, yet training in empirically-informed violence risk assessment strategies remains inaccessible. The authors developed and evaluated an online distance learning (ODL) course on clinical risk assessment targeting frontline providers and trainees in the United States. The ODL consisted of three modules: confidentiality, duty to third parties, and clinical assessment of violence risk. We evaluated the response characteristics and reach among different disciplines, as well as training satisfaction, change in knowledge, self-perceived competence, and self-reported impact on practice at six-week follow-up among 221 learners. Self-perceptions of competence and knowledge in the focal areas increased immediately after completing the training; self-perceived competence increased again by a significant margin at six-week follow-up. Participants reported a moderate-high positive impact of the training on practice.

Kopelovich, S., Olson, J., Michaelsen, K., & Wasser, T. (2023). Effects of online distance learning on clinicians' violence risk knowledge and competencies. Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law. doi: https://doi.org/10.29158/JAAPL.230008-23

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