The development and validation of the Successful Psychopathy Scale

Wallace, L., 2024. The development and validation of the Successful Psychopathy Scale. PhD, Nottingham Trent University.

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Psychopathy is one of the most prominent predictors of antisocial behaviour and violence across adulthood and adolescence. However, emerging arguments within the literature suggest that psychopathy may have evolutionary benefits or an adaptive sub-type. After developing an operationalised definition of this adaptive variant, labelled successful psychopathy, this thesis used rigorous psychometric testing, including recaptured scale technique, deductive rationale strategy, and Rasch Analysis, to develop a Successful Psychopathy Scale (SPS). The SPS is a 54-item measure comprised of six facets: callous-unemotional traits, social potency, confidence, risk-taking, stress-immunity, and manipulation, which went on to show excellent reliability and generalisability in this thesis using generalisability theory. These facets map directly onto both historical and contemporary theoretical understandings of the adaptive features of psychopathy. Across three further empirical studies, the SPS showed excellent convergent validity with existing measures of prototypical psychopathy, as well as great predictive validity in relevant areas such as political skill, workplace performance, and socioeconomic status. Results have both theoretical and empirical application to the field of successful psychopathy and psychopathy more broadly in improving the understanding of psychopathy as a dimensional construct and demonstrating that psychopathy sub-types such as successful psychopathy can be qualitatively and quantitatively measured. The thesis closes with a proposal for how to use the unique contributions of knowledge documented within might underpin the development of skills-based workshops targeting leadership and management.

Item Type: Thesis
Creators: Wallace, L.
Heym, N.Thesis
Sumich, A.Thesis
Medvedev, O.Thesis supervisorPSY3MEDVEOUNSPECIFIED
Date: January 2024
Divisions: Schools > School of Social Sciences
Record created by: Laura Ward
Date Added: 13 May 2024 08:26
Last Modified: 13 May 2024 08:26

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