Research Goals

We are currently focusing our research regarding children with concerning sexual behaviours (CSB) on understanding personal and family characteristics, behaviours, and accurate identification of factors that may increase risk to continue CSBs once identified.

Current Projects

Project title: Agreement between clinical documentation and clinician reported risk for repeated CSB

Date: 2015 ongoing

Investigators: T. Curwen

Abstract/Methodology: Clinical and personal bias may impact clinical decision making. This study was designed to investigate the efficacy of clinical documentation in accurately identifying factors that are reported by clinician’s as potentially increasing a child’s risk to continue CSBs. Additionally, the study also investigates the quality of clinical notes in discussing risk factors.  Results may provide evidence that clinical decisions and documentation are congruent or incongruent which may provide insight into clinical bias or the efficacy of file reviews in identifying risk factors.

Project title: Validating previously identified risk factors for repeated concerning sexual behaviours

Date: 2015 ongoing

Investigators: T. Curwen

Abstract/Methodology: Previous research revealed specific factors related to continued engagement in concerning sexual behaviours following identification/reprimand; this study was designed to validate the previously noted risk factors in a new sample of children identified for CSBs.

Project title: Family characteristics of child with concerning sexual behaviours

Date: 2017 ongoing

Investigators: T. Curwen & A. Zidenberg

Abstract/Methodology: There is a lack of evidence indicating a direct relationship between child sexual abuse and engaging in concerning sexual behaviours (CSB); additionally, there is evidence indicating that most victims of child sexual abuse do not engage in CSBs.  The purpose of this study is to identify family factors that may be relate to why some victims engage in CSBs.


Title: Responding to disclosures of concerning sexual behaviours: Professional’s response guidelines

Projected completion: 2018

Authors: T. Curwen, M. Maltar, & N. Falls

Description:  This response protocol provides a guide regarding how to respond to a disclosure of child CSB.  Practical intervention steps are provided for professionals likely to identify these children (e.g., daycare staff, teachers, medical personnel, parents, other adults, etc.)