Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology

, Volume 33, Issue 4, pp 445–460

Adolescent Psychopathy and Personality Theory—the Interpersonal Circumplex: Expanding Evidence of a Nomological Net

  • Randall T. Salekin
  • Anne-Marie R. Leistico
  • Krista K. Trobst
  • Crystal L. Schrum
  • John E. Lochman
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10802-005-5726-Y

Cite this article as:
Salekin, R.T., Leistico, A.R., Trobst, K.K. et al. J Abnorm Child Psychol (2005) 33: 445. doi:10.1007/s10802-005-5726-Y

Abstract

The construct validity of psychopathy was examined in a sample of 114 male and female young offenders (Mage = 15.16) at a southeastern detention center. The interpersonal circumplex served as a framework of general personality from which to examine the construct of adolescent psychopathy. A supplementary analysis of the psychopathy measures and the Big 5 factors of personality was also conducted using a matrix approach. Measures included: (a) Antisocial Process Screening Device (P. J. Frick & R. D. Hare, 2001); (b) Child Psychopathy Scale (D. R. Lynam, 1996); (c) Psychopathy Checklist—Youth Version (A. E. Forth, D. S. Kosson, & R. D. Hare, 2003); and (d) Interpersonal Adjective Scales Revised—Big 5 Version (P. Trapnell & J. S. Wiggins, 1991; J. S. Wiggins, 1995). Results showed substantial convergence among the three psychopathy measures. In addition, meaningful associations between psychopathy and constructs within the interpersonal circumplex and broader domains of the Big 5 were obtained. Two psychopathy scales correlated to a higher degree than expected with neuroticism. These findings provide evidence linking personality theory to the concept of child and adolescent psychopathy, thereby adding to its construct validity. However, they do so with the caveat that youth may also be displaying some characteristics of neuroticism, suggesting that worry and anxiety may accompany psychopathic features in earlier developmental stages. The implications of the current study are discussed.

Keywords

psychopathychildadolescentpersonality theory

Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Randall T. Salekin
    • 1
    • 3
  • Anne-Marie R. Leistico
    • 1
  • Krista K. Trobst
    • 2
  • Crystal L. Schrum
    • 1
  • John E. Lochman
    • 1
  1. 1.The University of AlabamaTuscaloosaUSA
  2. 2.York UniversityCanada
  3. 3.Department of PsychologyUniversity of AlabamaTuscaloosa