Self-report Measures of Psychopathic and Schizotypal Personality Characteristics: A Confirmatory Factor Analysis of Characteristics of Antisocial Behavior and Hypothetical Psychosis-Proneness in a College Sample

by Bonogofsky, Amber Nicole

Abstract (Summary)
This study separated the constructs of hypothetical psychopathy and hypothetical psychosis-proneness by performing Confirmatory Factor Analyses on different proposed factor structures of both psychopathic and schizotypic subclinical symptoms using data from a college sample. The study validated and provided evidence for existing structures of each construct. Research showed that the constructs overlap in their factor structures, as do their measures, although psychopathy and schizotypy are most likely distinct constructs. As conceptualized by Dr. Robert Hare, originator of the Psychopathy Checklist Revised (PCL-R; 2003), psychopathy reflects two interrelated but distinct factors of symptoms. The first symptom factor (Factor 1) reflects the shallow and remorseless emotional life of the psychopath. The next symptom factor (Factor 2) reflects a lifestyle of impulsive and antisocial behaviors. Further research into the factor structure of psychopathy has produced three, four, and even five-factor models of the construct (Cook & Michie, 2001; Lynam, 2002; Miller, Lynam, Widiger, & Leukefeld, 2001; Skeem, Mulvey, & Grisso, 2003; Widiger & Lynam, 1998;). Similarly, schizotypal characteristics appear to represent several distinct factors. Confirmatory Factor Analysis by Raine & Benishay (1995) determined that the nine subscales of the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire fit best with a three-factor model of schizotypy. Others, including Mason (1995), have compared different theories of schizotypy using Confirmatory Factor Analysis and tested two, three, and four-factor models. The results indicated that although neither of the psychopathy models achieved acceptable fit indices, the two-factor model fit the data better than the three-factor model. In addition, the three-factor model of schizotypy fit the data better than the four-factor model, though neither of these models achieved acceptable fit statistics. The final model indicated structural overlap in the psychopathic factor of Antisocial Lifestyle and the schizotypic factor of Impulsive Nonconformity. However, there did not seem to be overlap in the psychopathic factor of Affective/Interpersonal Deficits and the schizotypic factor of Introvertive Anhedonia, indicating that the emotional lives of the psychopath and the schizotype may be distinct from each other.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:David Schuldberg, Ph.D.; Bryan Cochran, Ph.D.; David Aronofsky, J.D., Ph.D.

School:The University of Montana

School Location:USA - Montana

Source Type:Master's Thesis



Date of Publication:07/25/2007

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