The purpose of this dissertation project was to develop an introductory webinar resource to provide training of mental health professionals (MHPs) to work with perpetrators of child sexual abuse (PCSA). The training utilizes a strengths-based approach with a focus on sociocultural considerations for working with this population. A literature review revealed a gap in resources, treatment, and clinical training pertaining to PCSA. The results of an initial training needs survey among MHPs indicated that MHPs do not receive education or training on PCSA and could benefit from training. Through this webinar training, MHPs acquire a basic understanding of PCSA and its complexities to work with this population in a manner that facilitates more adaptive functioning. The webinar training resource was evaluated by one general mental health evaluator and one expert mental health evaluator. Evaluation of the training indicated that the training was useful, informative, specialized for PCSA, and contributed to the readiness to work with PCSA. Additionally, the evaluators found the training to reflect a strengths-based perspective with attention to sociocultural issues. Limitations to the project were identified and future directions for the webinar training are discussed including suggestions for inclusion that would improve this introductory training resource. This training resource provides a different perspective to working with this highly stigmatized and marginalized population and can pave the way for providing treatment that humanizes and respects the dignity of PCSA while simultaneously address both the needs of PCSA and the safety needs of the community.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Mental health counseling; Training--Mental health personnel; Child sex offenders--Mental health counseling; Mental health personnel and patient

Date of Award


School Affiliation

Graduate School of Education and Psychology



Degree Type


Degree Name


Faculty Advisor

Shelly P. Harrell