Psychopathy Assessment and Related Constructs: Differences and Distinctions for Primary and Secondary Psychopaths
Abilene Campus (Residential)
Date of Award
Master of Science
Committee Chair or Primary Advisor
Second Committee Member or Secondary Advisor
Third Committee Member or Committee Reader
This study investigated the assessment of psychopathy from the perspectives of two self-report scales that differ substantially their construction and conceptual approach to the fundamental clinical subtyping of psychopaths: primary versus secondary psychopathic presentations. The self-report scales used in this study were the Levenson Self-Report of Psychopathy Scale (LSRP; Levenson et al., 1995) and the Perkins’ Alienation Scale-Short Version (PAS; Perkins & Harper, 1998). It was hypothesized that the presence of psychopathy would demonstrate significant presence in the distribution of undergraduate students and additionally, that these measures would demonstrate construct validity and replicate previously established relationships between psychopathy measures and related constructs. Additional hypotheses proposed that factor-model of the LSRP would not adequately distinguish between primary and secondary psychopathic presentations, and that the co-morbidity model of the PAS would better fit the data. Observed results confirmed the presence of clinical-level psychopathic traits, demonstrated adequate convergent construct validity, and replicated the majority correlation patterns of psychopathy with other selected variables. Continuous variable analysis of LSRP primary and secondary psychopathy scores did not provide useful distinction in linear modeling, however, simultaneous classification as psychopathic-depressed provided evidence of significantly elevated hopelessness scores. Findings suggest that a primary focus on co-morbid presentations with clear implications for assessment in clinical and forensic settings and the need for specialized treatment approaches are described.
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Saleem, Simon, "Psychopathy Assessment and Related Constructs: Differences and Distinctions for Primary and Secondary Psychopaths" (2020). Digital Commons @ ACU, Electronic Theses and Dissertations. Paper 253.