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Superficiality in forensic psychiatric patients is related to superior phonological, semantic and syntactic skills
Department of Social Sciences, Mid Sweden University, Sundsvall, Sweden. (CAPS - Centre for Criminological And PsychoSocial research)
Department of Social Sciences, Mid Sweden University, Sundsvall, Sweden; Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne, Australia. (CAPS - Centre for Criminological And PsychoSocial research)ORCID iD: 0000-0002-8285-0935
2015 (English)In: Nordic Journal of Psychiatry, ISSN 0803-9488, E-ISSN 1502-4725, Vol. 69, no 5, p. 392-396Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: Psychopaths are reported to have unusual language processing, and they have beensuggested to have better phonological awareness than do non-psychopaths. Phonologicalprocessing skills have not been studied among psychopathic persons, and it is unclear how thedegree of psychopathy is related to such skills.

Aims: One aim of the present study was toinvestigate this relationship. An additional aim was to investigate how affective-interpersonaltraits and antisocial lifestyle of psychopaths are related to verbal skills such as reading andspelling, as well as to phonological processing skills.

Material and methods: Forty (80% male)forensic psychiatric patients participated. They were all Swedish speaking and their mean agewas 36 years. The patients performed reading and spelling tests as well as a battery of tasksassessing phonological processing. The patients were also assessed using the Psychopathy Checklist: Screening Version (PCL:SV).

Results: The patients’ scores on Factor 1 (affective andinterpersonal traits) of the PCL:SV were significantly positively correlated with results on decoding of sentences and reading speed tests as well as with phonological processing skills. However, the only item that was significantly related to phonological processing skills as wellas semantic and syntactic skills was Superficial.

Conclusions: In general, psychopaths easilyshift conversational topics, and it may be due to a certain cognitive skill such as rapidautomatized naming. We suggest that further studies focus on rapid automatized naming inpsychopaths to clarify whether their superficial character might be related to rapid naming.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Taylor & Francis, 2015. Vol. 69, no 5, p. 392-396
Keywords [en]
Language; Phonological processing skills; Psychopathy; Semantic skills; Superficiality; Syntactic skills
National Category
Psychiatry Psychology
Research subject
Psychology; Psychiatry; Criminology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-47379DOI: 10.3109/08039488.2014.994031ISI: 000361330800010PubMedID: 25592288Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-84929845783OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-47379DiVA, id: diva2:893143
Available from: 2016-01-12 Created: 2016-01-12 Last updated: 2017-11-30Bibliographically approved

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Selenius, HeidiStrand, Susanne

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