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Personality Tests Observe and describe the structure and content of personality – the characteristic ways an individual thinks, feels, behaves, and interacts.

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Presentation on theme: "Personality Tests Observe and describe the structure and content of personality – the characteristic ways an individual thinks, feels, behaves, and interacts."— Presentation transcript:

1 Personality Tests Observe and describe the structure and content of personality – the characteristic ways an individual thinks, feels, behaves, and interacts Clarifies Diagnoses Problematic patterns of behavior Intra and interpersonal dynamics Treatment implications Can be objective or projective

2 Measuring Personality & Psychological Functioning Objective testing Specific questions or statements to which the person responds by using specific, fixed answers or a rating scale Scores tabulated and compared to reference groups Projective testing Ambiguous or unstructured stimuli to which client is asked to respond freely. Unconscious or conscious needs, motives, interests, dynamics are projected onto ambiguous stimuli revealing internal dynamics or personality More challenging to score and interpret than objective

3 Objective Tests Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI; MMPI-2) Millon Multi-Axial Inventory III (MCMI-III) 16 Personality Factors (16PF) NEO Personality Inventory (NEO-PI)

4 Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory- 2 Introduction and Overview

5 History First published in 1943 by Hathaway and McKinley Designed for routine diagnostic assessments Empirical keying approach 504 statements 724 Minnesota”normals” and 221 psychiatric patients Originally 8 clinical scales plus validity scales MF and Si added later (items increased to 566)

6 History (cont.) Revised version is the MMPI-2 (1989) inadequate original standardization sample concerns about item content objectionable items not broad enough to assess certain characteristics like suicide and drug abuse Separate forms for adolescents and adults 567 true/false items Normative sample (MMPI-2) 2600 U.S. residents aged 18-90 (census derived) Test retest ranges from.58-.92

7 History MMPI-2 Yields individual’s clinical profile compared with the normative sample Much of research on interpretation from MMPI applies to MMPI-2 Most frequently used personality test in the US for adults and adolescents


9 MMPI-2/MMPI-A Original 10 clinical/personality scales and original 3 validity scales and added 4 validity measures Additional options: Content scales Harris-Lingoes subscales Supplementary scales Critical items

10 Administration and Scoring Administered individually or in groups not a “take home” test computerized version available Administration time is approximately 1 to 1.5 hours Scored by hand or computer Must be interpreted by qualified professionals For use with individuals 18 years and older Can break test session up into shorter segments MMPI-2 for 18-year-olds who are in college, working or living independently

11 Administration and Scoring (cont.) If only standard scales are required - administer first 370 items many supplementary scales are not available unless you give all 567 items If hand scoring use scoring key appropriate to individual’s gender Use the K correction for this class Interpretation is configural in nature and not dependent on any one scale

12 Multicultural Issues and the MMPI-2 African Americans tend to score higher on scales F, 8 and 9 Male Latinos scored higher on scale 5 than European American males mean difference of less than 5 T score points All mean differences among groups are less than 5 T score points and moderators variables appear to explain the variance in performance

13 Tips on instructions Augment the standard instructions with: Reason for testing and how results will be used Test is designed to determine if someone is presenting themselves in an overly positive or negative manner so it is best to be as honest as possible Some questions may seem unusual because the test is designed to assess individuals with a wide range of personality styles and symptoms If an item does not apply to an individual, indicate with a true or false response and try not to leave any questions blank.

14 Validity Scales ? Scale (Cannot say) number of items left unanswered If 30 or more items are left unanswered the protocol is invalid F scale (Infrequency) 66 items atypical or deviant response style endorsed by less than 10% of the population accompanied by high scores on clinical scales general indicator of pathology or “faking bad.”

15 F scale (cont.) No exact cutoff for suspecting an invalid profile T scores of 70 - 90 are common among prison, inpatient populations Extreme elevations indicate invalid profile 100 or higher More liberal cutoff for adolescents on MMPI-A

16 Validity Scales (cont.) Lie (L) Scale 15 items extent to which client is “faking good” or describing self in an overly positive manner Uneducated, lower SES will score higher Average number of endorsed items is 3 T Scores of 65 or above are suspect and indicate profile should not be interpreted High scores may lead to lower scores on clinical scales

17 Validity Scales (cont) K scale(30 items) More subtle and sophisticated index of “faking good” or “faking bad” T scores above 65 or 70 are higher than expected Higher scores indicative of ego defensiveness and guardedness Persons from lower SES and educational backgrounds score somewhat lower on K Persons of higher intelligence and psychological sophistication may score high on K and low on L K scores are inversely related to Scales 8,7 and 0 K correction is added to five of the clinical scales

18 Validity scales (cont.) Variable Response Inconsistency Scale (VRIN) An additional validity indicator developed for MMPI-2 Measures tendency to respond inconsistently to MMPI-2 items 47 pairs of items with similar or opposite content In general, raw score greater than 13 (T>80) indicates inconsistent responding Useful when examined along with F scale True Response Inconsistency Scale (TRIN ) To identify an all true (acquiescence) or all false (non acquiescence) response style 20 pairs of items that are opposite in content Raw scores range from 0 to 23 Higher TRIN (T> 80 in true direction) tendency to give true responses indiscriminately lower TRIN (T > 80 in false direction) tendency to give false responses indiscriminately

19 Clinical Scales Scale 1. Hypochondriasis (Hs) personality characteristics consistent with a diagnosis of hypochondriasis high concern with illness and disease complain about a variety of physical problems and attempt to manipulate/ control others with complaints egocentric, immature, pessimistic, sour, whiny and passive aggressive critical of others express hostility inwardly

20 Scale 2: Depression (D) Items related to brooding, physical slowness, subjective feelings of depression, mental apathy, physical malfunctioning High scorers (T>70) report feelings of depression, sadness, feeling blue, unhappiness, dysphoria, hopelessness about future Display behaviors like lack of energy, anhedonia, crying, psychomotor retardation Tend to be self critical, withdrawn, aloof Patients seeking inpatient care often have Scale 2 as highest point

21 Scale 3 : Hysteria (Hy) To identify patients who have hysterical reactions to stress Person who often feels overwhelmed and avoids responsibility by developing physical symptoms Physical symptoms worsen with increased stress May report headaches, stomach discomfort, chest pains, weakness with no organic cause Have symptoms that appear and dissappear suddenly Do not report experiencing emotional turmoil and have an exaggerated degree of optimism Higher scores = exaggeration of denial, somatization, dissociation, immaturity, naïvete, low levels of insight

22 Scale 4: Psychopathic Deviate (Pd) Measure of rebelliousness Difficulty incorporating values and standards of society, problems with authority May engage in asocial or antisocial acts Stormy interpersonal and family relationships Underachievers Poor planning and judgement Relationships are shallow and superficial Immature and childish, narcissistic, selfish, egocentric Extraverted and outgoing Can be hostile and aggressive - sarcasm, cynicism, lack of trust

23 Scale 5: Masculinity-Femininity (Mf) Originally developed to identify homosexual invert males 56 items on MMPI-2 covering a range of topics A non-clinical scale Scale 5 elevations may be associated with positive functioning High scores for men - lack of stereotypic masculine interests, aesthetic and artistic interests, participate in child-rearing, housekeeping activities High scores for women are uncommon and usually indicative of rejection of traditional female role, interest in sports, hobbies, activities that are stereotypically more masculine than feminine Low scores for men/women - presenting self as traditionally masculine or feminine in hobbies, roles, interests

24 Scale 6: Paranoia(Pa) Designed to identify patients judges to have paranoid symptoms like ideas of reference, feelings of persecution, grandiose self-concepts, suspiciousness, excessive sensitivity T scores above 70 and 6 is highest scale - person may exhibit frankly psychotic behavior Moderate elevations (60 - 70): paranoid orientation, excessively sensitive, overly responsive to opinions of others, feel mistreated, blame others for difficulties May also be suspicious and guarded, exhibit hostility, resentment, argumentativeness Utilize projection as defense mechanism Prognosis for therapy is poor

25 Scale 7 : Psychasthenia (Pt) Similar to obsessive-compulsive disorder Thinking characterized by excessive doubts, compulsions, obsessions and unreasonable fears High scorers are extremely anxious, tense and agitated, may have physical complaints May have physical complaints and complaints of fatigue, exhaustion, insomnia and bad dreams Rigid and moralistic High scores will lack self confidence, are plagued by self doubts, can be perfectionistic, conscientious, neat, orderly, and meticulous Often report feeling sad and unhappy Tend to be shy and do not interact well socially May be motivated for treatment due to inner turmoil

26 Scale 8: Schizophrenia (Sc) Possibility of a thought disorder (T=75-90) Confusion, disorganization, disorientation, unusual thoughts, attitudes, Delusions, hallucinations may be present Often have histories of inpatient/outpatient psychiatric treatment Schizoid lifestyle Shy aloof and uninvolved with few friends Unable to express hostility- withdraw into daydreams, fantasies Plagued by self doubt, feel insecure, incompetent, dissatisfied Stubborn, moody, opinionated but can also be generous, peaceful, sentimental Can be immature and impulsive Prognosis for therapy is poor

27 Scale 9: Hypomania (Ma) Designed to identify individuals experiencing hypomanic or elevated mood, accelerated speech and motor activity, irritability, flight of ideas and brief periods of depression A measure of psychological and physical energy Extreme elevation (T > 80) suggestive of a manic episode Outgoing, sociable, gregarious Friendly, pleasant, enthusiastic, self-confident May feel upset, tense, nervous, anxious, dissatisfied with life Poor prognosis in therapy

28 Scale 0: Social Introversion (Si) Nonclinical scale Introversion-extraversion continuum High scorers are socially introverted, insecure and uncomfortable in social situations Shy, reserved, timid Prefer to be alone and have few friends Described by others as cold and distant, hard to get to know Passive, submissive, compliant in relationships Worry, anxious, feel irritable, may experience periods of depression Low scorers – are sociable and extraverted, outgoing, gregarious, friendly and talkative Strong need to be around others Viewed as expressive and verbally fluent Active and energetic

29 MMPI-II: Content Scales ANX: Anxiety FRS: Fears OBS: Obsessiveness DEP: Depression HEA: Health Concerns BIZ: Bizarre Mentation ANG: Anger CYN: Cynicism ASP: Antisocial Practices TPA: Type A Behavior LSE: Low Self-Esteem SOD: Social Discomfort FAM: Family Problems WRK: Work Interference TRT: Negative Treatment Indicators

30 WELSH CODING Record the 10 numbers of the clinical scales in order of T scores, from the highest on the left to the lowest on the right When adjacent scores are within one T score point, they are underlined. When they have the same T score they are placed in the ordinal sequence found on the profile sheet and underlined

31 Symbols 120 and above !! 110-119! 100-109** 90-99* 80-89“ 70-79‘ 65-69+ 60-64- 50-59/ 40-49: 30-39# 29 or less to the right of #

32 Projective Tests Rorschach Inkblot Thematic Apperception Test (TAT) Projective Drawing Tests Draw-A-Person Draw-A-House Draw-A-Tree Draw-A-Family Sentence completion tests

33 Clinical Judgment Ultimately, clinician uses Judgment Impressions Experience Data Examines all the pieces of the puzzle Theoretical framework Prior experience Clinical training Intuitions Managed care insurance companies Highly specific assessment tool Objectify target symptoms

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