Personality Psychology and Butcher
The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory, second edition (MMPI – 2) is one of the few personality tests administered used across the US. This assessment was originally designed in 1939, but was not published until 1942 by the University of Minnesota Hospitals (Butcher, 1996). The main purpose of the assessment was to aide in the acknowledgment of behavioral social problems among psychiatric patients. In other words, the initial authors of the test used the results to compile diagnoses specifically for their mentally disturbed patients.
When it comes to determining use of the MMPl-2 or the MMPI-A for an 18year old, it is suggested to counselors to determine the individual’s current life situation (i. e. living independently) and recognizing that using the MMPl-2 norms can result in higher T scores for the standard scales when compared to the MMPI-A (Butcher and Williams, 2000). The world of psychology has evolved the application of the MMPl-2 to informal and public places.
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An assessment that began as a tool for diagnosing psychiatric patients is now used for employment purposes where applying it’s results to finding areas of imilarities or strengths is opposite to its developed purpose and does not fall within its parameters of use or standardization. Similarly, its implementation for Job screening has stirred some scrutiny because of issues involving protecting the privacy of the individuals who take the assessment. The MMPI – 2 contains questions concerning many sensitive or private topics (such as religion).
Psychologists strongly worry that if used inappropriately this information invades privacy. Although the MMPI originated in 1942, this assessment did not experience estandardization until 1982. Once a staff was compiled, the revision of such assessment was not made possible for another seven years. Butcher & Williams (2000) discuss the issue at hand by identifying concerns with the test-retest data. Both contest that the population used was narrow (normal males) and reliabilities were compiled over shortened retesting intervals (8. 8 days), either of which has the ability to positively skew current and future outcomes. This process involved updating the language used in the assessment. Also, new scales that address areas uch as substance abuse, anxiety, ego strength, marital distress, gender roles, PTSD, and scales to assess abnormal personality were developed and implemented as well. After all of this research and scrutiny, the current MMPI-2 is comprised of 10 scales that measure an individual’s personality traits.
The basic (clinical) Scales include: Hypochondriasis (Hs), Depression (D), Hysteria (Hy), Psychopathic deviance (Pd), Masculinity-femininity (Mf), Paranoia (Pa), Psychasthenia (Pt), Schizophrenia (sc), Hypomania (Ma) and Social Introversion (Si). The Hs scale was developed to express symptoms related to that of a ypochondriasis, which a measure of one’s somatic obsessions or symptoms. The D scale identifies symptoms of depression or items such as pessimistic attitude, lack of interest in life, and negative mood. The Hy scale was implemented to measure response to stress.
This includes (but is not limited to) narcissism and denial. The Pd scale was constructed in order to identify psychotic personality tendencies. The aggression. Masculinity-femininity, or Mf, was included to examine homosexual tendencies. Because of the sensitivity of this subject, the scale can measure asculine or feminine behaviors or concerns regarding sexual beliefs or behaviors. Paranoia, or Pa scale and was constructed to identify paranoia and has been retained due to its sensitivity to areas such as feelings of persecution and overall sensitivity.
Psychasthenia, or (Pt) involves an individual’s general symptom pattern, which can identify anxiety disorders, such as fear, worry and obsessions. The Schizophrenia scale was constructed to identify Schizophrenia. It is, however, likely possible that high scores may also identify a schizoid lifestyle, bizarre ideations, or peculiar erceptual experiences. Hypomania, or (Ma), is used to identify issues of instability. Ma examines possible issues of manic or hypomanic symptoms. Finally, the last scale, or (S’) explores the area of social introversion.
Low T-scores may mean an individual’s tendency to withdraw from social situations is highly likely (Newmark, 1996). The MMPI assessment is a model for popular personality inventories and since its restandardization in 1989; it has become more widely used across the globe (Butcher, Lim, Nezami, 1998). Upon production, the MMPl-2 has been translated 150 imes in 22 different languages and has been used in 46 countries at a minimum (Butcher et al. , 1998). Controversy has increased regarding the applicability of the test across cultural lines.