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Interpretation of Extreme MMPI-2 Protocols: Use of the MMPI-2 Infrequency Psychopathology (Fp) and the Infrequency Correctional (Fc) Scales in the Detection of Malingering

NCJ Number
Journal of Forensic Psychology Practice Volume: 7 Issue: 4 Dated: 2007 Pages: 101-110
L. Thomas Kucharski Ph.D.; Scott Duncan PsyD
Date Published
10 pages
This study provides some guidance on the use of the Infrequency Psychopathology (Fp) and Infrequency Correctional (Fc) as adjuncts to the F (infrequency) scale in extreme profiles.
Preliminary analyses with the groups (malingering versus not malingering) as the criterion and demographic variables as predictors revealed that there were no significant demographic differences between groups. Although there has been a great deal of research on the utility of the MMPI-2 in the detection of malingering, the findings to date present a confusing picture of just how the research should be applied to forensic practice. Research on the Fp scale has been equivocal. The study assessed the utility of the Fp, as an adjunct to the F scale as it was initially conceived, and the newly developed Fc scales in detecting malingering. Criminal defendants with F scale elevations of T>95 were categorized into malingering and not malingering groups based on their performance on the Structured Interview of Reported Symptoms (SIRS). Logistic regression analyses demonstrated that both the Fp and Fc scales significantly differentiated the malingering from not malingering groups with acceptable accuracy. The results are discussed in terms of the utility of these measures as adjuncts to the F scale in the detection of malingering. Detecting criminal defendants who are malingering is an important process that involves the integration of psychometric data, clinical history, clinical presentation, and situational factors. Psychometric instruments such as the MMPI-2 are widely used and have been validated by an impressive body of research. In spite of the impressive scientific support for the utility of the MMPI-2 in the detection of malingering, a number of practical issues have remained unresolved. Applying this research to forensic psychological practice is difficult given the research findings. The data was drawn from an archival sample of 280 male criminal defendants referred by the Federal courts for competency to stand trial, criminal responsibility, and/or aid in sentencing evaluations to the United States, Penitentiary in Atlanta, GA. Figures, references


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