Post-Conviction Sex Offender Testing Guidelines
To establish guidelines for polygraph testing in the comprehensive management and treatment of post conviction sex offenders for the purpose of complying with Florida State Statutes 948.03 and to enhance public safety.
A. Improve qualifications of polygraph examiners using advanced polygraph techniques through advanced training and education; and adhering to high standards of professional ethics and conduct.
B. Serve as a professional polygraph contact for other professionals involved with post conviction sex offender testing.
C. Cooperate with other professional organizations in matters of mutual interest.
D. Encourage, develop ideas for and conduct research in the areas of Post Conviction Sex Offender Testing (PCSOT) polygraph testing.
E. Recognition through certification by the Florida Polygraph Association (FPA) of those examiners who have met the training requirements established by the FPA for post conviction sex offender testing.
A. POLYGRAPH: An instrument/computer program that is capable of recording visually, permanently and simultaneously, indicators of a person's cardiovascular pattern and changes therein, a person's respiration patterns and changes therein, and a person's electrodermal response and changes therein. Indications of other psychophysiological changes or bodily responses may be recorded in addition but may not serve as a substitute of those defined herein.
B. POLYGRAPHIST: Any individual polygraph examiner who is a graduate of a polygraph school, active in administering polygraph examinations, and who meets the requirements of a polygraph organization, i.e. American Polygraph Association (APA), American Association of Police Polygraphist (AAPP) and State Polygraph Associations.
C. APPROVED POLYGRAPH SCHOOL: One designated by the FPA Board of Directors (Board). Approval will be based on the school being accredited by the APA, AAPP and/or the FPA at the time of completion.
D. POST CONVICTION SEX OFFENDER TESTING (PCSOT) POLYGRAPH EXAMINATION: The employment of polygraph equipment used for the purpose of detection of deception or verifying truth of statements of any person under supervision and/or treatment for the commission of any sex offense. This polygraph examination is specifically intended to assist in treatment and supervision of post conviction sex offenders.
E. POLYGRAPH EXAMINATION: The examination will include any or all of the sections referred to as a pre-test, collection of charts, test data analysis, and when appropriate, post test interview. Collection of biographical data, instrument explanation, discussion of the issues, chart collection evaluation and posttest cannot be scheduled for less than 90 minutes.
F. POST CONVICTION SEXUAL OFFENDER TRAINING: Specialized training, approved by the Board, for the purpose of specific polygraph testing of post convicted sex offenders. Hereinafter, referred to specialized training.
The FPA will certify those examiners who have successfully completed the requirements as set forth in these guidelines. Therefore, those examiners are considered to possess the requisite knowledge to conduct polygraph testing in conjunction with sex offender treatment and monitoring programs. The FPA does not certify the competency of the individual examiner nor does it guarantee that any person who engages in Post Conviction Sex Offender polygraph testing is following currently approved FPA guidelines.
V. POLYGRAPH EXAMINER QUALIFICATIONS
A. A graduate of a polygraph school approved by a major polygraph association, i.e. APA, AAPP and recognized by the Board.
B. A member in good standing with the FPA.
C. Members who apply for certification after January 1, 2002, must have a minimum of a Baccalaureate Degree from an accredited college or university.
D. A member shall have a minimum of three (3) years of verified polygraph experience and a minimum of 200 specific polygraph examinations completed.
E. Examiners shall successfully complete a minimum of forty (40) hours of specialized sex offender polygraph examination training approved by the FPA. This training shall focus on sex offender assessment, evaluation, and monitoring as approved by the Board.
F. After the initial forty (40) hours of specialized training has been attained, all members shall successfully complete a minimum of twenty (20) hours of continuing education of specialized training, approved by the FPA, every two (2) years.
G. Who remains active in the polygraph profession by conducting a minimum of fifty (50) polygraph examinations per year to include at least five (5) Post Conviction Sex Offender Tests.
A. INTERN: A member who does not meet the experience requirement as listed in Section D. Polygraph examiner qualifications will be eligible to intern under a certified sex offender examiner until such time as they meet the experience requirement.
1. Each intern must complete an Intern Application indicating the name of the intern supervisor.
2. Each intern must comply with all of the provisions of these guidelines and submit all test data, test materials and audio/visual recordings, to their intern supervisor, as requested.
B. INTERN SUPERVISOR: A member who has been certified by the FPA to do sex offender testing under these guidelines may serve as an intern supervisor, provided that they conduct a minimum of 25 Post Conviction Sex Offender examinations per year.
1. The intern supervisor must actively supervise the intern and periodically review and critique the intern's Post Conviction Sex Offender examinations. The intern supervisor shall maintain documentation of the intern's progress.
2. In the event an intern is unable to obtain an intern supervisor, the Board shall appoint one.
3. The intern supervisor shall attest to the successful completion of the internship on the intern's application for certification.
VII. POLYGRAPH EXAMINATION RECORDING GUIDELINES
A. All polygraph examinations will be maintained as permanent visual tracings of the polygraph data for diagnostic and documentation purposes.
B. Recording channels/components required for Post Conviction Sex Offender Polygraph Examinations will be:
1. Respiration patterns made by two (2) separate pneumograph components. One respiration component will record the thoracic (upper chest) respiration and other component will record the abdominal (lower stomach) respiration pattern.
2. A channel tracing will record the Electrodermal pattern (also commonly referred to as the Galvanic Skin tracings), which reflects relative changes and the conductivity/resistance of very small amounts of electrical current by the epidermal tissue.
3. A cardiograph channel will be utilized to record changes in the pulse rate, pulse amplitude and changes in the relative blood pressure.
C. To effectively evaluate the polygraph tracings during any polygraph examination, it is understood by all professional examiners that easily readable trace recordings must be obtained. Tracings that are either too large, too small, or that leave extraneous responses to outside stimuli are difficult, if not impossible to evaluate. In order to allow the examiner to render a valid and reliable opinion based on the recorded information contained within the polygraph charts, it is recommended that all pneumograph and cardiograph tracings recorded during the polygraph examination be of sufficient amplitude to be easily read and evaluated by the initial examiner and by a reviewing examiner for any quality control review purpose.
D. All pneumograph and cardiograph tracings should be not less than one half inch in amplitude. Chart tracings consistently less than one half inch in amplitude in the pneumograph and/or the cardiograph tracings, without sufficient documented explanation of physiological cause will be considered insufficient for analysis purposes. Every effort should be made by the examiner to increase the baseline amplitude of recordings that are less than recommended minimums. Charts that are evaluated and determined to be inadequate, may require additional testing of the examinee.
VIII. POLYGRAPH INSTRUMENT CALIBRATION
A. All polygraphs, computerized or analog, utilized for the recording of changes in physiological responses produced by the human body during a polygraph examination, at a minimum, will be calibrated according to the manufacturer's guidelines as provided in the instruction and operation manuals.
B. Examiners should insure their instrument(s) are calibrated as required or when the instrument has been moved from one location to another.
IX. SPECIALIZED TESTING TECHNIQUES AND PROCEDURES
A. Examination techniques will be limited to the Zone Comparison or comparative question techniques taught at any of the FPA recognized schools within the last two years.
B. NO TECHNIQUE shall be used that has been modified without the support of sufficient published validity and reliability studies for that particular modification.
C. All specialized testing procedures will be in compliance with the FPA Standards and Principles of Practice, which include pretest, in-test and post test procedures.
D. In order to allow sufficient time for the pretest, in test and post test procedures, a polygraph examination will be scheduled for a minimum of ninety (90) minutes.
E. No more than four (4) Post Conviction Sex Offender polygraph examinations may be scheduled during any ten (10) hour work day by a FPA certified Post Conviction Sex Offender Test examiner, which shall consist of:
F. An acquaintance/stimulation test will be conducted prior to relevant testing. This test is often used to demonstrate that the psychological set of the examinee and the examinee's reaction capabilities are established for diagnostic purposes.
G. During the post test interview of a no significant response/no deception indicated (NSR/NDI) examination, the examiner must advise the examinee that there were responses to the comparison questions.
H. An examiner may not submit a professional opinion that the examinee was "NSR" to the entire examination or to any single relevant question asked during the examination if the examinee's answer to any relevant question in the test question sequence is determined to have significant response (SR). In keeping with professional reporting standards, for an examinee to be reported as "NSR" by the examiner, a plus (+) score in each spot must occur. Other applicable scoring rules shall also apply.
K. Polygraphist's who also serve as Therapists and Probation Officers will not conduct Post Conviction Sex Offender examinations on those offenders over which they exercise direct or in-direct supervision or treatment responsibilities.
X. QUALITY CONTROL ASSURANCE
A. Each member involved in Post Conviction Sex Offender polygraph examinations must follow the quality control process as listed below, which allows for independent review of polygraph charts and reports.
B. For quality control assurance, examiners must:
1. Produce polygrams of the examinations in their entirety.
2. Numerically hand score all relevant test examination charts (Computerized scoring algorithms may be used, in addition to hand scoring). The scoring procedure must be appropriate for the technique employed.
3. Provide their work product, including all recordings, upon request of the Board, or it's designee.
4. All polygraph examinations of sexual offenders submitted for quality control shall recorded in their entirety. Though video recording is preferred medium, audio recording is sufficient to meet this standard.
XI. DISCIPLINARY PROCEDURES
A. Any member certified by the FPA in Post Conviction Sex Offender Testing whose conduct is deemed to be in violation of the FPA Constitution, By-Laws, Code of Ethics, Standards and Principles of Practice and/or these guidelines will be subject to disciplinary action as established in the FPA By-Laws.
B. Any individual expelled for cause from APA, AAPP, FPA or any other professionally recognized national or state polygraph association, or anyone convicted of a felony or anyone discharged from related employment for an unethical, amoral or dishonest cause is not eligible to be certified as a Post Conviction Sex Offender polygraph examiner by the FPA. Similarly, individuals in a polygraph licensing state who have had their polygraph license suspended or revoked for cause is not an eligible candidate.
XII. TRAINING CERTIFICATION PROCEDURES
A. Those members who wish to obtain certification, in accordance with these guidelines, must submit the appropriate application, with proper documentation, to the Director of the Randall Jones School of Continuing Studies.
B. To maintain certification, the member must comply with the required continuing studies of specialized training, as set forth in these guidelines.
APA Post Sex Offender Testing Guidelines
The Joint Polygraph Committee on Offender Testing (JPCOT)
Peer Review: Mr. Robert Lundell Chairman, APA Sub-Committee; Post Conviction Sex Offender Testing (PCSOT) and Mr. Eric Holden
Revised 3rd- 4-07-01
Adopted by Membership on June 17, 2001