Recently, PAR added several new features to the PAI Plus reports on PARiConnect. As a result, we have received a few questions about how to use the Negative Impression Management (NIM) and Positive Impression Management (PIM) predicted profile overlays as well as the NIM- and PIM-specific profiles. We went directly to author Leslie C. Morey, PhD, to get his answers on how you can use these features to enhance your understanding.
LM: NIM and PIM predicted profile overlays are regression-based predictions of the profile based on information from the validity scales. These profiles represent one strategy for understanding the influence of the response styles represented by the validity scales, NIM and PIM. In this approach, PAI scale scores are predicted solely by either NIM or PIM, using a regression model based on the correlations observed in the standardization samples. Thus, these profiles are not based on data from the profile of the individual being assessed, with the exception of their NIM or PIM scores. The resulting profile constitutes what would be expected given the observed score on NIM or PIM. The contrast between observed (i.e., the respondent’s actual PAI profile) and predicted profiles indicates the extent to which scale scores are expected to have been influenced by response set distortion. If the observed and expected scores are comparable (e.g., within one standard error of measurement), then the scores can be largely attributed to the effects of whatever led to the observed response set, such as potential exaggeration or cognitive distortions.
LM: The NIM- and PIM-specific profiles represent another strategy for understanding the influence of any observed response styles on the PAI profile. However, instead of predicting every score on the rest of the profiles, it compares the observed profile to a group of profiles from the standardization samples that displayed a similarly elevated score on PIM or NIM. This strategy then calculates standard scores for the individual’s observed scores based on the means and standard deviations of similarly distorted profiles. Thus, elevations indicate psychopathology above and beyond response sets. Unlike the predicted scores, which tend to yield greater variability in predictions for negative impression management than for positive impression management, the specific score strategy is equally useful in understanding the influences of both types of response sets.
Two groups are used for comparison purposes on the NIM- and PIM-specific scores, as defined by two ranges on these scales. The first group, the lower range, is based on cutoff scores determined to have maximal efficiency in distinguishing impression management from genuine groups. For NIM, this range is 84T to 91T; for PIM, it is 57T to 67T. The second group, the higher range, is equivalent to scores that equal or exceed two standard deviations above the mean in a clinical population: 92T for NIM and 68T for PIM. No specific scores are generated if NIM is less than 84T and PIM is less than 57T.
Read more about how the NIM scale can be used to assess malingering.
The PAI Plus takes the existing PAI items and gives users an updated way to interpret the data. Using the original PAI items, the new report offers:
DSM-5® update: Diagnostic possibilities align with the most up-to-date criteria.
Alternative Model for Personality Disorders Profile: An optional new profile scores the PAI in accordance with the model.
Additional supplemental indices: 15 new supplemental indices plus supplemental clinical indicators provide additional profile information.
Context-specific norm groups: Profile overlays for new normative groups can be compared to the examinee’s profile.
Related post: Now on the Training Portal: PAI Plus webinar!
The PAI-SP offers exclusive features
The PAI Plus Interpretive Explorer, only available on the PAI-SP, enables you to interact with PAI reports to access definitions, review supplemental indexes, and compare client data with normative and clinical samples to offer additional insights into your client.
Further additions allow users to compare client scores to context-specific norm groups via z scores.
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Mark Ruiz, PhD, ABPP, is a licensed psychologist at the James A. Haley Veterans’ Hospital and coauthor of the Personality Assessment Inventory Interpretive Report for Correctional Settings (PAI-CS). He specializes in competency to stand trial, mental state at the time of offense, violence and sexual recidivism risk assessment, and sentencing mitigation. In today’s blog, PAR Project Director Sierra Iwanicki, PhD, talks to him about the use of the Personality Assessment Inventory™ (PAI®) in forensic evaluations, how he became drawn to the field, and where he thinks forensic psychology is going in the future.
How did you become involved in forensic evaluations?
It happened by accident. During my undergraduate and graduate training, I had brief experiences working with juvenile and adult offenders. I took some workshops about competency and sanity evaluations through the University of South Florida. Following the workshops, some opportunities to do court-ordered evaluations opened in the county I was in and it took off from there.
Why is it helpful to include a measure of personality in these evaluations?
Psychological testing that can address multiple clinical issues in an objective manner adds credibility to any evaluation. Judges, juries, and law enforcement often are not reassured when a clinician makes an opinion based solely on the words that came out of the client’s mouth. “Because he told me so” is not typically a persuasive argument. Psychological testing backed by science tends to be well received in the court of law.
Describe your use of the PAI in forensic evaluations.
I typically use the PAI in risk assessment and sentencing mitigation evaluations. The evidence-based validity scales are important for gauging the client’s approach to the evaluation. The PAI’s broad coverage of mental health and substance use disorders is also helpful in clarifying the diagnostic picture. Additionally, the well-validated Antisocial Features (ANT) and Aggression (AGG) scales are central to opinions of future risk for reoffending and violence.
What makes the PAI unique from other instruments?
The PAI’s ability to measure personality pathology and substance use independently is critical in many forensic evaluations. The growing body of research validating the use of various PAI scales, most notably Negative Impression Management (NIM) and Antisocial Features (ANT), is helpful in generating persuasive opinions in the forensic setting.
How do you see the field of forensic psychology changing in the next 10 years?
The COVID-19 pandemic has placed an emphasis on telehealth. As such, technologies to ensure the availability and integrity of psychological testing will be very important. Forensic clinicians who typically work in correctional or criminal justice settings are hampered by a lack of access to facilities and an inability to do face-to-face encounters due to the infection control protocols in place. Even in situations where access is available, many clients do not have the know-how or computer access to take a psychological test remotely. Having the capacity to administer tests via telehealth and to ensure the validity of the results will be crucial for forensic psychology.
What advice would you give to anyone interested in pursuing forensic psychology?
Forensic psychology is like scotch—you must have a taste for it. Attorneys play by a different set of rules than mental health professionals, with the main goal of the legal system being to sharpen conflict to resolve a particular issue. Unconditional positive regard is not often practiced in the courtroom. Psychologists are not typically comfortable with the baseline level of hostility and conflict present in the courtroom. However, the role of the legal system is to resolve conflicts in pursuit of justice; any psychologist interested in stepping into that forum should be ready for the culture that comes with it.
What is one thing we can glean from psychological science to improve mental health outcomes during the current collective pandemic crisis?
I think psychology has emphasized the importance of human connection, something that has taken a big hit with the social distancing and protective protocols that come with our response to the pandemic. Efforts to maintain connections during this time are more crucial than ever, particularly for the elderly and for vulnerable populations that have been isolated for extended periods of time.
Related article: Mendeley bibliographies available for the PAI!
We’ve heard the requests. And we listened! The PAI Plus is coming this fall!
The PAI Plus takes the existing PAI items and gives users an updated way to interpret the data. Using the PAI, an objective inventory of adult personality, the new PARiConnect report offers:
• DSM-5® update: Updated diagnostic possibilities align with the DSM criteria.
• Alternative Model Profile: An optional new profile scores in accordance with the Alternative Model for Personality Disorders.
• Additional supplemental indices: Based on years of academic research, 15 new supplemental indices provide additional profile information related to negative and positive distortion and random responding. Supplemental clinical indicators provide profile information related to suicidality, aggression, level of care, presence of ADHD, and more.
• Context-specific norm groups: Including profile overlays for bariatric surgery candidates, child custody evaluations, chronic pain patients, college students, deployed military, egg donors/gestational carriers, motor vehicle accident claimants, police applicants, and potential kidney donors. This profile is overlayed onto the examinee’s profile to allow for comparison.
• Updated report: An updated look and feel create a streamlined and modern-looking report.
A manual supplement details the research, theory, and development behind this update.
To determine the right kit for your needs or to preorder, call Customer Support at 1.800.331.8378.
Last year we posted a blog about our commitment to provide our Customers with additional sources of information about our products through a series of white papers.
Since that time, we’ve released a number of new white papers that are available to you at no cost.
The Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function–Preschool Version (BRIEF-P). This resource helps readers learn about enhanced interpretation of the BRIEF-P, complete with illustrative case samples. You can find the new white paper under the Resources tab on the BRIEF-P page or via this direct link.
The Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI). This white paper provides you with insights into the creation and use of a research repository for the PAI. Customers can find the new white paper under the Resources tab on the PAI page or via this direct link.
The Self-Directed Search (VeteranSDS). This white paper explains how the VeteranSDS report and other tools can be used to assist military veterans transitioning to civilian careers. The new white paper can be found under the Resources tab on the SDS page or via this direct link.
The Feifer Assessment of Reading and the Feifer Assessment of Mathematics (FAR and FAM). This resource will help you learn more about using built-in skills, error, and behavior analyses to assist in the development of more effective reading and math interventions. To see this new white paper, go to the Resources tab on the FAR or FAM page, or use this direct link.
The PDD Behavior Inventory (PDDBI). A new white paper explains the process and rationale behind the release of the Spanish translation of the PDDBI Parent Form. The new white paper can be accessed under the Resources tab on the PDDBI page or via this direct link.
We hope you find that these documents enhance your use of our instruments. Watch for more white papers in the future!
In order to facilitate research using the Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI), we are now offering comprehensive bibliographies through Mendeley, a free reference management tool. In addition, a white paper describing this research repository and explaining its creation and use has been created.
After accessing the Mendeley link, you will be prompted to create an account. Mendeley includes a desktop application and a cloud-based system for ease of use when finding references and citing them within a document. Use of this free resource is encouraged to facilitate research on the topics related to the PAI. Individuals who do not wish to create an online account may visit the Resources tab on the PAI product page to view Word documents of these bibliographies.
In addition to the PAI, PAR offers Mendeley bibliographies for the PDD Behavior Inventory (PDDBI), the Standard SDS, and the Student SDS. More will be added to the website soon!
Looking at things from another perspective often makes them clearer. In psychological testing, for instance, rating scales are often used to glean information about a single client from observers who are close to that client, such as parents and teachers. Used in conjunction with a client’s self-report data, observer reports can give clinicians a well-rounded picture of a client’s functioning. This not only helps them narrow down and identify a client’s diagnosis, but it also helps them develop appropriate and effective treatment options.
PAR’s newest assessment instrument, the Personality Assessment Screener–Observer (PAS-O), is an observer report designed to complement the self-report Personality Assessment Screener (PAS). Derived from the gold-standard Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI)—one of the most important innovations in the field of personality assessment—the PAS screens for a wide range of contemporary clinical problems in just 5 minutes.
Using the same 22 items on the PAS, which were selected because they are the most sensitive to a broad range of clinical problems, the PAS-O provides clinicians with information about a client from the perspective of someone close to that client, such as a spouse, parent, or close friend. It can be used to support PAS scores, validate problem areas, and indicate the need for follow-up testing. The PAS-O is the only informant personality assessment normed on score discrepancies, and it was normed on both community and clinical samples composed of dyad pairs. It takes just 5 minutes to administer and features 10 elements representing 10 distinct domains of clinical problems.
Discrepancy scores for the PAS-O can also be calculated using scores from the full PAI rather than the PAS. If self-report ratings from a client are not available due to confusion, thought disorder, or other limitations, the PAS-O can be used in isolation and provides a metric indicating the likelihood that the client would have an elevated PAI score.
Learn more about the PAS-O or purchase your PAS-O Introductory Kit or PAS/PAS-O Combination Kit today!