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Psychological Assessment - Vol 26, Iss 2

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Psychological Assessment Psychological Assessment publishes mainly empirical articles concerning clinical assessment. Papers that fall within the domain of the journal include research on the development, validation, application, and evaluation of psychological assessment instruments. Diverse modalities (e.g., cognitive, physiologic, and motoric) and methods of assessment (e.g., questionnaires, interviews, natural environment and analog environment observation, self-monitoring, participant observation, physiological measurement, instrument-assisted and computer-assisted assessment) are within the domain of the journal, especially as they relate to clinical assessment. Also included are topics on clinical judgment and decision making (including diagnostic assessment), methods of measurement of treatment process and outcome, and dimensions of individual differences (e.g., race, ethnicity, age, gender, sexual orientation, economic status) as they relate to clinical assessment.
Copyright 2014 American Psychological Association
  • Measuring impulsivity in daily life: The Momentary Impulsivity Scale.
    Impulsivity is a core feature of many psychiatric disorders. Traditionally, impulsivity has been assessed using retrospective questionnaires or laboratory tasks. Both approaches neglect intraindividual variability in impulsivity and do not capture impulsivity as it occurs in real-world settings. The goal of the current study was to provide a method for assessing impulsivity in daily life that provides both between-individual and within-individual information. Participants with borderline personality disorder (BPD; n = 67) or a depressive disorder (DD; n = 38) carried an electronic diary for 28 days and responded to 9 impulsivity items up to 6 times per day. Item distributions and iterative exploratory factor analysis (EFA) results were examined to select the items that best captured momentary impulsivity. A brief 4-item scale was created that can be used for the assessment of momentary impulsivity. Model fit was good for both within- and between-individual EFA. As expected, the BPD group showed significantly higher scores on our Momentary Impulsivity Scale than the DD group, and the resulting scale was moderately correlated with common trait impulsivity scales. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Clarifying the content coverage of differing psychopathy inventories through reference to the Triarchic Psychopathy Measure.
    The triarchic model of psychopathy (Patrick, Fowles, & Krueger, 2009) was formulated as an integrative framework for reconciling differing conceptions of psychopathy. The model characterizes psychopathy in terms of 3 distinguishable phenotypic components: boldness, meanness, and disinhibition. Data from a large mixed-gender undergraduate sample (N = 618) were used to examine relations of several of the best known measures for assessing psychopathic traits with scores on the Triarchic Psychopathy Measure (TriPM), an inventory developed to operationalize the triarchic model through separate facet scales. Analyses revealed that established inventories of psychopathy index components of the model as indexed by the TriPM to varying degrees. Although each inventory provided effective coverage of meanness and disinhibition components, instruments differed in their representation of boldness. Present results demonstrate the heuristic value of the triarchic model for delineating commonalities and differences among alternative measures of psychopathy and provide support for the utility of the triarchic model as a framework for reconciling alternative conceptions of psychopathy. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Dispositional drinking motives: Associations with appraised alcohol effects and alcohol consumption in an ecological momentary assessment investigation.
    Alcohol use can be understood as a strategic behavior, such that people choose to drink based on the anticipated affective changes produced by drinking relative to those produced by alternative behaviors. This study investigated whether people who report drinking for specific reasons via the Drinking Motives Questionnaire–Revised (DMQ-R; Cooper, 1994) actually experience the alcohol effects they purportedly seek. As a secondary goal, we examined relations between drinking motives and indices of the amount of alcohol consumed. Data were drawn from 3,272 drinking episodes logged by 393 community-recruited drinkers during a 21-day Ecological Momentary Assessment investigation. After accounting for selected covariates, DMQ-R enhancement motives uniquely predicted real-time reports of enhanced drinking pleasure. DMQ-R coping motives were associated with reports of increased drinking-contingent relief and punishment. Enhancement motives uniquely predicted consuming more drinks per episode and higher peak intra-episode estimated blood alcohol concentration. The findings extend the evidence for the validity of the DMQ-R motive scores by demonstrating that internal drinking motives (enhancement and coping) are related to the experienced outcomes of drinking in the manner anticipated by theory. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Clinically meaningful change: False positives in the estimation of individual change.
    In applied research as well as in clinical practice, it is common to evaluate the change that patients experience as a consequence of the treatment they receive. Various methods designed to evaluate this change are reviewed in this study. This review has focused on a specific aspect that has not been given proper attention: the false positive rate. For this reason, a nonchange situation was simulated (pre-post design with no differences between pre and post) and the behavior of 8 different methods was evaluated in this scenario. Different distributions as well as different sample sizes were simulated. A thousand samples were created for each simulated condition. The percentage of times each method detected a change was obtained in order to evaluate the behavior of the selected methods. Because the simulated situation is a nonchange one, any change alert was considered as a false positive. Out of the 8 evaluated methods, the standardized individual difference and the confidence intervals of linear regression are the ones with the best performance. The remaining methods fail to correctly identify and reject sampling random fluctuations. In most cases there is a tendency to consider changes that respond only to random variations as statistically reliable. However, a simple modification related in reliability estimation allows a considerable improvement in the behavior of some methods. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Validation of Interpersonal Support Evaluation List-12 (ISEL-12) scores among English- and Spanish-speaking Hispanics/Latinos from the HCHS/SOL Sociocultural Ancillary Study.
    The Interpersonal Support Evaluation List-12 (ISEL-12; Cohen, Mermelstein, Kamarck, & Hoberman, 1985) is broadly employed as a short-form measure of the traditional ISEL, which measures functional (i.e., perceived) social support. The ISEL-12 can be scored by summing the items to create an overall social support score; three subscale scores representing appraisal, belonging, and tangible social support have also been proposed. Despite extensive use, studies of the psychometric properties of ISEL-12 scores have been limited, particularly among Hispanics/Latinos, the largest and fastest growing ethnic group in the United States. The current study investigated the reliability and structural and convergent validity of ISEL-12 scores using data from 5,313 Hispanics/Latinos who participated in the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos Sociocultural Ancillary Study. Participants completed measures in English or Spanish and identified their ancestry as Dominican, Central American, Cuban, Mexican, Puerto Rican, or South American. Cronbach’s alphas suggested adequate internal consistency for the total score for all languages and ancestry groups; coefficients for the subscale scores were not acceptable. Confirmatory factor analyses revealed that the one-factor and three-factor models fit the data equally well. Results from multigroup confirmatory factor analyses supported a similar one-factor structure with equivalent response patterns and variances between language groups and ancestry groups. Convergent validity analyses suggested that the total social support score related to scores of social network integration, life engagement, perceived stress, and negative affect (depression, anxiety) in the expected directions. The total score of the ISEL-12 can be recommended for use among Hispanics/Latinos. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Bifactor analysis and construct validity of the HADS: A cross-sectional and longitudinal study in fibromyalgia patients.
    The dimensionality of the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) is a current source of controversy among experts. The present study integrates a solid theoretical framework (Clark & Watson’s, 1991, tripartite theory) and a fine-grained methodological approach (structural equation modeling; SEM) to examine the dimensionality and construct validity of the HADS in fibromyalgia (FM) patients. Using the HADS data of 269 Spanish patients with FM, we estimated the cross-sectional and, for the first time, longitudinal fit (autoregressive model) of 2 competing models (oblique 2-factor vs. bifactor) via confirmatory factor analysis. The pattern of relationships between the HADS latent dimensions and positive and negative affect (PA and NA) was analyzed using SEM. HADS reliability was assessed by computing the omega and omega hierarchical coefficients. The bifactor model, which accounted for the covariance among HADS items with regard to 1 general factor (psychological distress) and 2 specific factors (depression and anxiety), described the HADS structure better than the original oblique 2-factor model during both study periods. All latent dimensions of the bifactor model were temporally stable. The SEM analysis revealed a significant link between psychological distress and NA as well as between depression and low PA. Only the general factor of psychological distress showed adequate reliability. In conclusion, the HADS shows a clear bifactor structure among FM patients. Our results indicate that it is not recommendable to compute anxiety and depression scores separately because anxiety variance is tapped primarily by the broader construct of psychological distress, and both specific dimensions show low reliability. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Examining the factor structures of the Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire and the Self-Compassion Scale.
    The Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire (FFMQ; Baer, Smith, Hopkins, Krietemeyer, & Toney, 2006) and the Self-Compassion Scale (SCS; Neff, 2003) are widely used measures of mindfulness and self-compassion in mindfulness-based intervention research. The psychometric properties of the FFMQ and the SCS need to be independently replicated in community samples and relevant clinical samples to support their use. Our primary aim was to establish the factor structures of the FFMQ and SCS in individuals with recurrent depression in remission, since Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) was developed as a treatment for preventing depressive relapse. In order to determine the consistency across populations, we examined the factor structures of the FFMQ and SCS in 3 samples: (1) a convenience sample of adults, (2) a sample of adults who practice meditation, and (3) a sample of adults who suffer from recurrent depression and were recruited to take part in a trial of MBCT. Confirmatory factor analyses (CFAs) showed that a 4-factor hierarchical model of the FFMQ best fits the community sample and the clinical sample but that a 5-factor hierarchical model of the FFMQ best fits the meditator sample. CFA did not endorse the SCS 6-factor hierarchical structure in any of the 3 samples. Clinicians and researchers should be aware of the psychometric properties of the FFMQ to measure mindfulness when comparing meditators and nonmeditators. Further research is needed to develop a more psychometrically robust measure of self-compassion. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Press CRTT to measure aggressive behavior: The unstandardized use of the competitive reaction time task in aggression research.
    The Competitive Reaction Time Task (CRTT) is the measure of aggressive behavior most commonly used in laboratory research. However, the test has been criticized for issues in standardization because there are many different test procedures and at least 13 variants to calculate a score for aggressive behavior. We compared the different published analyses of the CRTT using data from 3 different studies to scrutinize whether it would yield the same results. The comparisons revealed large differences in significance levels and effect sizes between analysis procedures, suggesting that the unstandardized use and analysis of the CRTT have substantial impacts on the results obtained, as well as their interpretations. Based on the outcome of our comparisons, we provide suggestions on how to address some of the issues associated with the CRTT, as well as a guideline for researchers studying aggressive behavior in the laboratory. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Do maladaptive behaviors exist at one or both ends of personality traits?
    In the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (5th ed.; American Psychiatric Association, 2013) personality disorder trait model, maladaptive behavior is located at one end of continuous scales. Widiger and colleagues, however, have argued that maladaptive behavior exists at both ends of trait continua. We propose that the role of evaluative variance differentiates these two perspectives and that once evaluation is isolated, maladaptive behaviors emerge at both ends of nonevaluative trait dimensions. In Study 1, we argue that evaluative variance is worthwhile to measure separately from descriptive content because it clusters items by valence regardless of content (e.g., lazy and workaholic; apathetic and anxious; gullible and paranoid; timid and hostile, etc.), which is unlikely to describe a consistent behavioral style. We isolate evaluation statistically (Study 2) and at the time of measurement (Study 3) to show that factors unrelated to valence evidence maladaptive behavior at both ends. We argue that nonevaluative factors, which display maladaptive behavior at both ends of continua, may better approximate ways in which individuals actually behave. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Development and validation of Triarchic Construct Scales from the Psychopathic Personality Inventory.
    The Triarchic model of psychopathy describes this complex condition in terms of distinct phenotypic components of boldness, meanness, and disinhibition. Brief self-report scales designed specifically to index these psychopathy facets have thus far demonstrated promising construct validity. The present study sought to develop and validate scales for assessing facets of the Triarchic model using items from a well-validated existing measure of psychopathy—the Psychopathic Personality Inventory (PPI). A consensus-rating approach was used to identify PPI items relevant to each Triarchic facet, and the convergent and discriminant validity of the resulting PPI-based Triarchic scales were evaluated in relation to multiple criterion variables (i.e., other psychopathy inventories, antisocial personality disorder features, personality traits, psychosocial functioning) in offender and nonoffender samples. The PPI-based Triarchic scales showed good internal consistency and related to criterion variables in ways consistent with predictions based on the Triarchic model. Findings are discussed in terms of implications for conceptualization and assessment of psychopathy. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Differences in within- and between-person factor structure of positive and negative affect: Analysis of two intensive measurement studies using multilevel structural equation modeling.
    The Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS) is a widely used measure of emotional experience. The factor structure of the PANAS has been examined predominantly with cross-sectional designs, which fails to disaggregate within-person variation from between-person differences. There is still uncertainty as to the factor structure of positive and negative affect and whether they constitute 2 distinct independent factors. The present study examined the within-person and between-person factor structure of the PANAS in 2 independent samples that reported daily affect over 7 and 14 occasions, respectively. Results from multilevel confirmatory factor analyses revealed that a 2-factor structure at both the within-person and between-person levels, with correlated specific factors for overlapping items, provided good model fit. The best-fitting solution was one where within-person factors of positive and negative affect were inversely correlated, but between-person factors were independent. The structure was further validated through multilevel structural equation modeling examining the effects of cognitive interference, daily stress, physical symptoms, and physical activity on positive and negative affect factors. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Therapeutic assessment promotes treatment readiness but does not affect symptom change in patients with personality disorders: Findings from a randomized clinical trial.
    [Correction Notice: An Erratum for this article was reported in Vol 26(2) of Psychological Assessment (see record 2014-10320-001). A study from Ackerman, Hilsenroth, Baity, & Blagys (2000), Hilsenroth, Ackerman, Clemence, & Strassle (2002), and Hilsenroth, Peters, & Ackerman (2004) was misrepresented in the original text. The text stated that the therapists and the assessors in this study were not the same person. The evaluation of this study should appear as follows: “It is noteworthy that the therapists and assessors were the same person, indicating that the techniques practiced by TA providers foster a therapeutic alliance that is sustained in subsequent psychotherapy and might aid in treatment readiness and success.”] The field of clinical personality assessment is lacking in published empirical evidence regarding its treatment and clinical utility. This article reports on a randomized controlled clinical trial (N = 74) allocating patients awaiting treatment in a specialized clinic for personality disorders to either 4 sessions of (a) therapeutic assessment (TA) or (b) a structured goal-focused pretreatment intervention (GFPTI). In terms of short-term outcome, TA demonstrated superior ability to raise outcome expectancies and patient perceptions of progress toward treatment (Cohen’s d = 0.65 and 0.56, respectively) and yielded higher satisfaction (d = 0.68). Moreover, patients reported marginally stronger alliance to the TA clinicians than to GFPT clinicians (d = 0.46), even though therapists perceived the alliance as equally positive in both groups. No differences in symptomatic ratings were observed. Results are discussed with reference to treatment utility in this particular patient group. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Correction to De Saeger et al. (2014).
    Reports an error in "Therapeutic Assessment Promotes Treatment Readiness but Does not Affect Symptom Change in Patients With Personality Disorders: Findings From a Randomized Clinical Trial" by Hilde De Saeger, Jan H. Kamphuis, Stephen E. Finn, Justin D. Smith, Roel Verheul, Jan J. van Busschbach, Dine J. Feenstra and Eva K. Horn (Psychological Assessment, Advanced Online Publication, Jan 27, 2014, np). A study from Ackerman, Hilsenroth, Baity, & Blagys (2000), Hilsenroth, Ackerman, Clemence, & Strassle (2002), and Hilsenroth, Peters, & Ackerman (2004) was misrepresented in the original text. The text stated that the therapists and the assessors in this study were not the same person. The evaluation of this study should appear as follows: “It is noteworthy that the therapists and assessors were the same person, indicating that the techniques practiced by TA providers foster a therapeutic alliance that is sustained in subsequent psychotherapy and might aid in treatment readiness and success.” (The following abstract of the original article appeared in record 2014-02483-001.) The field of clinical personality assessment is lacking in published empirical evidence regarding its treatment and clinical utility. This article reports on a randomized controlled clinical trial (N = 74) allocating patients awaiting treatment in a specialized clinic for personality disorders to either 4 sessions of (a) therapeutic assessment (TA) or (b) a structured goal-focused pretreatment intervention (GFPTI). In terms of short-term outcome, TA demonstrated superior ability to raise outcome expectancies and patient perceptions of progress toward treatment (Cohen’s d = 0.65 and 0.56, respectively) and yielded higher satisfaction (d = 0.68). Moreover, patients reported marginally stronger alliance to the TA clinicians than to GFPT clinicians (d = 0.46), even though therapists perceived the alliance as equally positive in both groups. No differences in symptomatic ratings were observed. Results are discussed with reference to treatment utility in this particular patient group. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Dimensional latent structure of somatic symptom reporting in two representative population studies: Results from taxometric analyses.
    Somatoform disorders are characterized by somatic symptoms that suggest a medical condition when such a condition is not present. Recently, Thomas and Locke (2010) and Jasper, Hiller, Rist, Bailer, and Witthöft (2012) found that the latent status of somatic symptom reporting may be best viewed from a dimensional perspective in a student, primary care, and an epilepsy-monitoring-unit setting using the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory–2–Restructured Form Somatic Complaints (RC1) Scale and Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ–15). To determine whether the latent status of somatic symptom reporting is dimensional in general population samples and across other measures, we analyzed the latent status of somatic symptom reporting in 2 large general German population samples using the PHQ–15 and Screening for Somatoform Symptoms (SOMS–7; N1 = 2,469; N2 = 2,434). We applied 3 popular taxometric methods: MAXEIG, MAMBAC, and L–Mode. In both samples, the analyses indicated a dimensional solution. Hence, the latent structure of somatic symptom reporting encompasses differences in degree rather than kind. Implications of the dimensional latent status of somatoform disorders regarding assessment and causality are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Acculturative family distancing: Psychometric analysis with the extended two-tier item response theory.
    The Acculturative Family Distancing (AFD) rating questionnaire measures the distancing that occurs between immigrant parents and their children, which is caused by breakdowns in communication and cultural value differences. The items included in the AFD questionnaire are indicators for more proximal and problem-focused aspects of the acculturation gap. In this study, a psychometric analysis is performed on the data gathered with the AFD instrument. One hundred twenty-three Chinese American families (112 mothers, 85 fathers, and 120 children for a total of 317) completed the questionnaire. In addition, the specifications for an extended 2-tier item factor analysis model within a Bayesian multidimensional item response theory framework are provided to psychometrically analyze the AFD data. Results suggest that the original 2 dimensions of Communication Difficulties and Cultural Values Incongruency can be further refined into 4 clinically relevant dimensions (i.e., Verbal Communication Difficulties, Nonverbal Communication Difficulties, General Cultural Values Incongruency, and Family Values Incongruency). Moreover, reducing the number of items can improve AFD estimates and reduce assessment burden. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Establishing a common metric for depressive symptoms: Linking the BDI-II, CES-D, and PHQ-9 to PROMIS Depression.
    Interest in measuring patient-reported outcomes has increased dramatically in recent decades. This has simultaneously produced numerous assessment options and confusion. In the case of depressive symptoms, there are many commonly used options for measuring the same or a very similar concept. Public and professional reporting of scores can be confused by multiple scale ranges, normative levels, and clinical thresholds. A common reporting metric would have great value and can be achieved when similar instruments are administered to a single sample and then linked to each other to produce cross-walk score tables (e.g., Dorans, 2007; Kolen & Brennan, 2004). Using multiple procedures based on item response theory and equipercentile methods, we produced cross-walk tables linking 3 popular “legacy” depression instruments—the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (Radloff, 1977; N = 747), the Beck Depression Inventory–II (Beck, Steer, & Brown, 1996; N = 748), and the 9-item Patient Health Questionnaire (Kroenke, Spitzer, & Williams, 2001; N = 1,120)—to the depression metric of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Patient-Reported Outcomes Measurement Information System (PROMIS; Cella et al., 2010). The PROMIS Depression metric is centered on the U.S. general population, matching the marginal distributions of gender, age, race, and education in the 2000 U.S. census (Liu et al., 2010). The linking relationships were evaluated by resampling small subsets and estimating confidence intervals for the differences between the observed and linked PROMIS scores; in addition, PROMIS cutoff scores for depression severity were estimated to correspond with those commonly used with the legacy measures. Our results allow clinicians and researchers to retrofit existing data of 3 popular depression measures to the PROMIS Depression metric and vice versa. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Using the SRQ–20 factor structure to examine changes in mental distress following typhoon exposure.
    Empirical research is limited regarding postdisaster assessment of distress in developing nations. This study aimed to evaluate the factor structure of the 20-item Self-Reporting Questionnaire (SRQ–20) before and after an acute trauma, Typhoon Xangsane, in order to examine changes in mental health symptoms in an epidemiologic sample of Vietnamese adults. The study examined a model estimating individual item factor loadings, thresholds, and a latent change factor for the SRQ–20’s single “general distress” common factor. The covariates of sex, age, and severity of typhoon exposure were used to evaluate the disaster-induced changes in SRQ–20 scores while accounting for possible differences in the relationship between individual measurement scale items and the latent mental health construct. Evidence for measurement noninvariance was found. However, allowing sex and age effects on the pre-typhoon and post-typhoon factors accounted for much of the noninvariance in the SRQ–20 measurement structure. A test of no latent change failed, indicating that the SRQ–20 detected significant individual differences in distress between pre- and post-typhoon assessment. Conditioning on age and sex, several typhoon exposure variables differentially predicted levels of distress change, including evacuation, personal injury, and peri-event fear. On average, females and older individuals reported higher levels of distress than males and younger individuals, respectively. The SRQ–20 is a valid and reasonably stable instrument that may be used in postdisaster contexts to assess emotional distress and individual changes in mental health symptoms. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • The Mexican American Biculturalism Scale: Bicultural comfort, facility, and advantages for adolescents and adults.
    Empirical research on biculturalism is limited, in part because of the lack of quality measures of biculturalism. The currently available measures have limitations due to scoring procedures and sampling of only a narrow range of behaviors and attitudes. We present a measure of biculturalism that captures a broader range of the bicultural experience and uses a scoring system that better represents the wide ranging levels of biculturalism that exist in the diverse population of Mexican American adolescents, mothers, and fathers born in either Mexico or the United States. The Mexican American Biculturalism Scale (27 items) includes 3 subscales: bicultural comfort (9 items), bicultural facility (9 items), and bicultural advantages (9 items). We report on the reliability and construct validity of test scores and present confirmatory factor analyses findings for a diverse sample of 316 Mexican American families from a large southwestern metropolitan city. The Mexican American Biculturalism Scale is available in English and in Spanish. The use of the scale has implications for future research studying how biculturalism is related to psychological outcomes for Mexicans/Mexican Americans. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • A test of the construct validity of the Elemental Psychopathy Assessment scores in a community sample of adults.
    The Elemental Psychopathy Assessment (EPA) is a relatively new self-report measure of the basic traits associated with psychopathy. Using community participants (N = 104) oversampled for the presence of psychopathic traits, we examined the convergent and criterion validity of the EPA total and factor scores (i.e., Antagonism, Emotional Stability, Disinhibition, and Narcissism) in relation to self- and informant reports of psychopathy and the general personality dimensions of the HEXACO (Honesty–Humility, Emotionality, Extraversion, Agreeableness, Conscientiousness, and Openness to Experience; Ashton & Lee, 2009), as well as self-reported scores on narcissism, Machiavellianism, and externalizing behaviors (EBs) such as antisocial behavior and aggression. The EPA total and factor scores manifested substantial positive correlations with self- and informant-reported psychopathy scores and dimensions from the HEXACO, narcissism, Machiavellianism, and EBs. The patterns of these relations became clearer and more differentiated when examined via regression analyses such that the EPA factors manifested differential relations with various aspects of psychopathy (e.g., EPA Antagonism was the only unique correlate of psychopathy traits related to callousness and manipulation). Overall, the EPA is a promising assessment tool given the breadth of its coverage, the flexibility with which it can be used (total score; 4-factor scores; 18 subscale scores), and its ties to a popular model of basic personality traits. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • The psychology of spite and the measurement of spitefulness.
    Spite is an understudied construct that has been virtually ignored within the personality, social, and clinical psychology literatures. This study introduces a self-report Spitefulness Scale to assess individual differences in spitefulness. The scale was initially tested on a large sample of 946 college students and cross-validated on a national sample of 297 adults. The scale was internally consistent in both samples. Factor analysis supported a 1-factor solution for the initial pool of 31 items. Item response theory analysis was used to identify the best performing of the original 31 items in the university sample and reduce the scale to 17 items. Tests of measurement invariance indicated that the items functioned similarly across both university and national samples, across both men and women, and across both ethnic majority and minority groups. Men reported higher levels of spitefulness than women, younger people were more spiteful than older people, and ethnic minority members reported higher levels of spitefulness than ethnic majority members. Across both samples, spitefulness was positively associated with aggression, psychopathy, Machiavellianism, narcissism, and guilt-free shame, and negatively correlated with self-esteem, guilt-proneness, agreeableness, and conscientiousness. Ideally, this Spitefulness Scale will be able to predict behavior in both laboratory settings (e.g., ultimatum games, aggression paradigms) and everyday life, contribute to the diagnosis of personality disorders and oppositional defiant disorder, and encourage further study of this neglected, often destructive, trait. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Evidence against the continuum structure underlying motivation measures derived from self-determination theory.
    Self-determination theory (SDT) proposes a multidimensional conceptualization of motivation in which the different regulations are said to fall along a continuum of self-determination. The continuum has been used as a basis for using a relative autonomy index as a means to create motivational scores. Rasch analysis was used to verify the continuum structure of the Multidimensional Work Motivation Scale and of the Academic Motivation Scale. We discuss the concept of continuum against SDT’s conceptualization of motivation and argue against the use of the relative autonomy index on the grounds that evidence for a continuum structure underlying the regulations is weak and because the index is statistically problematic. We suggest exploiting the full richness of SDT’s multidimensional conceptualization of motivation through the use of alternative scoring methods when investigating motivational dynamics across life domains. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Are sluggish cognitive tempo and daytime sleepiness distinct constructs?
    Sluggish cognitive tempo (SCT) and daytime sleepiness are both common in individuals with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). There appears to be considerable overlap between the tired and lethargic aspects of SCT and behaviors frequently exhibited by individuals with daytime sleepiness. However, no studies have examined the degree to which these constructs overlap and whether or not they are empirically distinct. In Study 1, a confirmatory factor analysis with the SCT subscale of the Barkley Adult ADHD Rating Scale-IV (BAARS-IV) and the Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS) was conducted in a sample of 768 college students. Results demonstrated that SCT and daytime sleepiness exhibit considerable overlap but are empirically distinct. In Study 2, we examined the relation between SCT and daytime sleepiness and also the impact of comorbid SCT and sleepiness on the functioning of 58 college students rigorously diagnosed with ADHD. Regression analyses in both Study 1 and Study 2 showed that SCT predicts daytime sleepiness above and beyond symptoms of ADHD, anxiety, and depression. The 2 constructs were significantly related (r = .51), with the highest correlations occurring between the SCT tired and lethargic items with daytime sleepiness. College students with ADHD + SCT and daytime sleepiness were significantly more impaired than college students diagnosed with ADHD without SCT or daytime sleepiness. Together, these results fill an important gap in the literature by confirming SCT to be overlapping but empirically distinct from daytime sleepiness and demonstrating that SCT and daytime sleepiness are associated with functioning in college students with ADHD. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Measurement and structural invariance of the Antisocial Process Screening Device.
    Despite increasing study of psychopathic traits in children and adolescents, evidence regarding the factor structure of these traits has been inconsistent across community, clinic-referred, and incarcerated samples. Empirical support exists for both 2-factor (Impulsivity–Conduct Problems and Callous–Unemotional) and 3-factor (Narcissism, Callous–Unemotional, and Impulsivity) models, and factorial invariance across various samples has not been either tested or supported in the extant literature. We conducted confirmatory factor analyses of the Antisocial Process Screening Device (APSD; Frick & Hare, 2001) in 838 nonreferred twin pairs (M = 10.57 years, SD = 3.19 years) and 251 clinic-referred children (M = 10.82 years, SD = 3.39 years). Factorial invariance was tested across zygosity (monozygotic vs. dizygotic twins), sex (males vs. females), and age (younger vs. older children, divided by median age of 10.37 years) in the community sample and across sample type in both the community and clinic-referred samples. Results suggested that the 3-factor model fit better than did the 2-factor model in both community and clinic-referred samples. Using the best fitting 3-factor model, full measurement and structural invariance were found across zygosity, sex, and age in the community sample. Full measurement and structural invariance were also found across sample type except for differences in factor means across samples, suggesting excellent psychometric properties of the APSD. These results strongly support the robustness of the 3-factor model of psychopathic traits in children as well as the generalizability of the APSD across samples. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • A psychometric evaluation of the Panic Disorder Severity Scale for children and adolescents.
    The Panic Disorder Severity Scale (PDSS; Shear et al., 1997) is a well-validated measure that assesses symptoms of panic disorder with or without agoraphobia (PDA) in adults. The Panic Disorder Severity Scale for Children (PDSS-C) is an adaptation of the PDSS for youth ages 11–17. The current study evaluated the psychometric properties of the PDSS-C. Participants included 60 adolescents from a randomized controlled trial investigating the efficacy of an intensive cognitive behavioral treatment (CBT) for adolescent PDA. Convergent and discriminant validity of PDSS-C scores were evaluated via observed associations between the PDSS-C and the Childhood Anxiety Sensitivity Index (CASI; Silverman, Fleisig, Rabian, & Peterson, 1991), Multidimensional Anxiety Scale for Children (MASC; March, Parker, Sullivan, Stallings, & Conners, 1997), and Children’s Depression Inventory (CDI; Kovacs, 2003). Baseline and posttreatment data afforded the opportunity to evaluate the measure’s sensitivity to treatment-related change. PDSS-C scores demonstrated acceptable internal consistency (α = .82) and adequate 1-day test–retest reliability (r = .79). Convergent and discriminant validity of the PDSS-C scores were supported through significant associations with the CASI and the MASC, and nonsignificant associations with the CDI, respectively. Linear regression analysis demonstrated sensitivity to treatment-related changes—that is, greater PDSS-C change scores were significantly associated with assignment to CBT vs. waitlist condition. Clinical utility was further established through significant associations between PDSS-C change scores and MASC and CASI change scores, and through nonsignificant associations with CDI change scores. Results support the use of PDSS-C scores as reliable, valid, and clinically useful for the assessment of youth panic disorder in research and clinical settings. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Validation of the Narcissistic Personality Questionnaire for Children—Revised among U.S. students.
    In the present studies, the Narcissistic Personality Questionnaire for Children—Revised (NPQC-R), which was previously validated with 7th- and 9th-grade students in Singapore, was examined with a sample of U.S. students. The NPQC-R is a self-report measure and consists of 2 (Exploitativeness and Superiority) factors. In Study 1, a confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) was performed on the responses of 275 U.S. students in Grades 4–8. The results of the CFA indicated that a 2-factor model provided the best fit to the data. In addition, the NPQC-R was found to be invariant across U.S. students in Grades 4–6 and 7–8. In Study 2, support for the convergent and discriminant validity and test score stability of the NPQC-R scores was found among a sample of 112 U.S. students. Implications of the findings of the studies for mental health professionals who work with children and adolescents in clinical and school settings are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Detecting bullying in early elementary school with a computerized peer-nomination instrument.
    In this study we describe the PEERS Measure, a computerized assessment instrument that takes an innovative approach to using the peer-nomination method to identify bullying among elementary school children in Grades 1–2. Its psychometric characteristics were measured in 4,017 children from 190 school classes. The intercorrelations between the peer-nomination scores showed congruence of the data (e.g., bullying and peer rejection r = .51, defending and prosocial behavior r = .71). Boys were more involved in bullying, more rejected, and less prosocial. As reports by different informants were used, correlations of peer-reported bullying with aggressive behavior reported by a child him- or herself (r = .37) or by a teacher (r = .42) were in the expected range. Good test–retest reliability as measured by the intraclass correlations (average: .72) further suggests that the instrument has good psychometric properties. In line with earlier research, lower maternal educational levels, younger maternal age, and lower household income were related to more bullying and victimization. Overall, our findings show that the instrument provides a reliable measure of peer relations, thus making the use of peer nominations feasible in early elementary school. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Assessment of adolescents’ motivation for educational attainment.
    The Adolescent Motivation for Educational Attainment Questionnaire is a 32-item questionnaire (we drew 20 items from 3 subscales of the Educational Motivation Questionnaire; Murdock, 1999) that was developed to measure multiple potential dimensions of adolescents’ motivation to complete high school and enroll in post-secondary education, including competence and effort beliefs; perceived value of education; and peer, teacher, and parent support for educational attainment. We assessed a multiethnic sample (N = 569) of low-achieving students who started 1st grade together in 1 urban and 2 small city school districts. Participants were assessed over 2 consecutive years (Grades 8 and 9 given prior grade retention, or Grades 9 and 10 if not retained). Exploratory factor analyses identified 4 correlated dimensions underlying the questionnaire responses. Subsequent confirmatory factor analyses provided support for a bifactor model, which includes a general factor of students’ basic educational motivation, and specific factors of (a) teacher educational expectations, (b) peer aspirations, and (c) value of education. Measurement invariance of the bifactor model was established across students’ gender and ethnicity (Caucasian, African American, and Hispanic) and year of testing. Criterion-related validity of the general and specific factors with students’ school belonging, student–teacher warmth and conflict, disciplinary practices, letter grade, conduct problems, and behavioral engagement was examined. Practical implications of the measure are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Detecting fast, online reasoning processes in clinical decision making.
    In an experiment that used the inconsistency paradigm, experienced clinical psychologists and psychology students performed a reading task using clinical reports and a diagnostic judgment task. The clinical reports provided information about the symptoms of hypothetical clients who had been previously diagnosed with a specific mental disorder. Reading times of inconsistent target sentences were slower than those of control sentences, demonstrating an inconsistency effect. The results also showed that experienced clinicians gave different weights to different symptoms according to their relevance when fluently reading the clinical reports provided, despite the fact that all the symptoms were of equal diagnostic value according to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th ed., text rev.; American Psychiatric Association, 2000). The diagnostic judgment task yielded a similar pattern of results. In contrast to previous findings, the results of the reading task may be taken as direct evidence of the intervention of reasoning processes that occur very early, rapidly, and online. We suggest that these processes are based on the representation of mental disorders and that these representations are particularly suited to fast retrieval from memory and to making inferences. They may also be related to the clinicians’ causal reasoning. The implications of these results for clinician training are also discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Introducing the Geneva Emotion Recognition Test: An example of Rasch-based test development.
    Existing tests to measure the ability to recognize other people’s emotional expressions (emotion recognition ability [ERA]) mostly focus on a single modality (usually the face) and include only a small number of emotions, restricting their ecological validity. Further, their reliability is often unsatisfactory. The goal of the present study was to develop a new ERA test (Geneva Emotion Recognition Test [GERT]) that (a) features dynamic and multimodal actor portrayals (short videos with sound), (b) contains a large number of emotions, and (c) is based on modern psychometric principles (item response theory). We asked 295 participants to watch 108 actor portrayals and to choose, for each portrayal, which of 14 emotions had been expressed by the actor. We then applied the Rasch model independently to each of the 14 emotion portrayal subsets to select 83 final items for the GERT. Results showed that the model fits the emotion subtests and the overall GERT and that measurement precision is satisfactory. Consistent with previous findings, we found a decline in ERA with increasing age and an ERA advantage for women. To conclude, the GERT is a promising instrument to measure ERA in a more ecologically valid and comprehensive fashion than previous tests. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Predictive validity of the Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI) for identifying criminal reoffending following completion of an in-jail addiction treatment program.
    We examined the predictive validity of the Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI; Morey, 2007) for criminal reoffending over a 44–60 month follow-up period among incarcerated offenders (N = 124) who completed an addiction treatment program. With this study, we sought to test whether PAI scores conceptually relevant to Andrews and Bonta’s (2010) central eight and responsiveness factors were predictive of general and specific reoffending in a sample with criminal involvement and substance-related impairment. PAI scores tapping antisocial personality style and the anger/hostile component of antisocial cognitions had the most robust relationships with the timing and occurrence of reoffending. Hostile dominance and discrepancy scores of observed versus predicted drug and alcohol problems were also predictive of reoffending. None of the other variables examined were consistently associated with reoffending. We discuss these results in relation to the use of the PAI to inform clinical decision making for individuals involved in the criminal justice system. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Defining clinical severity in pediatric obsessive-compulsive disorder.
    Despite extensive use of the Children’s Yale Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale (CYBOCS; Scahill et al., 1997), the lack of normative data impedes interpretation of individual CYBOCS scores. Consequently, psychometrics on CYBOCS severity scores from 815 treatment-seeking youth with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) are presented, across age and sex, so that normative comparisons of obsessive, compulsive, and combined obsessive-compulsive severity could be calculated. Our findings suggest no evidence for marked age or sex differences. Further, obsessive-compulsive symptom severity scores (measured via the CYBOCS) appear consistent with global OCD syndrome severity (measured via the Clinician Global Impression–Severity scale [CGI-S; Guy, 1976]; r = .58). This study contributes the 1st empirically based guidelines for interpreting obsessive-compulsive symptom severity scores. After a diagnosis of OCD is determined, the CYBOCS can be used to determine severity of illness (however, categories of severity proposed by this article should not be used in the screening of OCD symptoms). Findings can facilitate clinicians’ and investigators’ ability to draw comparisons across obsessive-compulsive severity scores. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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  • Effective cutoffs for detecting random, partially random, and nonrandom 350-item MMPI–-A short form protocols.
    The ability of the 350-item short form Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory—Adolescent (MMPI–A; Butcher et al., 1992) validity scales to detect random protocols was investigated using samples of 250 nonrandom protocols, 250 half-random protocols, and 250 all-random protocols. As the manual warns, long form cutoffs of the Variable Response Inconsistency scale (VRIN) of 75T and the Infrequency scale (F) of 90T were ineffective in detecting random protocols. Alternative cutoffs for F₁ and the truncated VRIN and F scales were investigated. Short form subscales of VRIN and F were developed to improve detection of partially random protocols. An algorithm using alternative cutoffs for the scales and the new subscales was quite effective, detecting 95% of the all-random protocols, 87% of the half-random protocols, and 98% of the nonrandom protocols. A follow-up cross-validation study was conducted that confirmed the effectiveness of the algorithm. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved)
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