Deterring malingered psychopathology : the effect of warning simulating malingerers

King, Joanne K. & Sullivan, Karen A. (2009) Deterring malingered psychopathology : the effect of warning simulating malingerers. Behavioral Sciences and the Law, 27(1), pp. 35-49.

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The utility of a warning based on deterrence theory to deter malingering on measures of personality and psychopathology was examined. Sixty-seven first year psychology students were randomly assigned to one of three conditions: unwarned malingerers, warned malingerers and controls. Participants in the two malingering groups were given a financial incentive to simulate believable psychological impairment. Warned malingerers received an additional warning that the tests could detect malingering and that detection would result in loss of course credit. Controls received standardised test instructions. It was hypothesized that the malingering incentive would be sufficient to induce malingering, but that a deterrence theory warning would have a subsequent deterrent effect. Between-groups analyses indicated that the warning used in this study significantly altered test performance on the Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI) and revised Symptom Checklist 90 (SCL-90-R), such that warned malingerers scored significantly lower (faked less) than unwarned malingerers on the majority of the psychopathology scales and frequently approximated control group performances. These results support the effectiveness of a warning to complement existing malingering detection methods.

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ID Code: 13985
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Malingering, Neuropsychology, Psychopathology, Clinical Psychology, Psychology
DOI: 10.1002/bsl.839
ISSN: 0735-3936
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > PSYCHOLOGY (170100) > Biological Psychology (Neuropsychology Psychopharmacology Physiological Psychology) (170101)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > PSYCHOLOGY (170100) > Health Clinical and Counselling Psychology (170106)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Psychology & Counselling
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2009 John Wiley & Sons
Copyright Statement: The definitive version is available at
Deposited On: 04 Jul 2008 00:00
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 13:55

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