The psychopathy checklist youth version (PCL:YV): an investigation into its inter-rater reliability

Dickson, Sarah J. (2014) The psychopathy checklist youth version (PCL:YV): an investigation into its inter-rater reliability. D Clin Psy thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Research suggests that the roots of psychopathy are evident in youth. Studies have consistently shown psychopathy to be associated with a myriad of adverse outcomes including violence and antisocial behaviour. Thus, the early identification of psychopathic traits may facilitate early intervention and risk management strategies. A diagnosis of psychopathy has important clinical and legal implications. Thus, it is crucial that measures used to assess psychopathy are valid and reliable. This study investigated the inter-rater reliability (IRR) of the Psychopathy Checklist Youth Version (PCL: YV). Several studies have highlighted sources of rater bias with adult measures of psychopathy, amongst other measures. Therefore, this study also addressed whether IRR was associated with the rater’s professional characteristics or the severity of cases presented. Six case vignettes were developed (two with low, two with moderate and two with high levels of psychopathic traits). These were rated by experts in the field. Nineteen multidisciplinary health professionals recruited from relevant services participated in this study. All participants attended training on the PCL: YV and then rated the case vignettes using the PCL: YV and completed a Staff Information Questionnaire. This study found high IRR overall for the PCL: YV. However, lower IRR was obtained for particular items (“Impulsivity”, “Poor anger control”, “Early behaviour problems”) and the moderate cases. The rater’s professional characteristics were not found to influence IRR. Potential explanations for these findings are discussed followed by recommendations for future research.

Item Type: Thesis (D Clin Psy)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: PCL: YV, inter-rater reliability, psychopathy checklist, youth psychopathy
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Colleges/Schools: College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Health & Wellbeing > Mental Health and Wellbeing
Supervisor's Name: Davidson, Professor Kate
Date of Award: 2014
Depositing User: Miss Sarah Jane Dickson
Unique ID: glathesis:2014-5712
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 13 Nov 2014 10:55
Last Modified: 27 Nov 2014 16:25

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