Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Document Type



Researchers have recently noted college students fail validity measures and base rate data are needed for students meeting Slick et al.’s criteria (1999) for malingering. The association between meeting Slick Criteria and subsequent recommendations (i.e., to receive external gain) is unknown as is the diagnostic utility of embedded validity indices in this population. The authors utilized archival data from: 1) a university psychological clinic (n = 986) and 2) a university student control sample (n = 182). Measures included the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-III, Wechsler Memory Scale-III, and Personality Assessment Inventory. Empirically supported embedded validity indices were utilized to retrospectively identify suspected malingering patients. Group performance, according to level of symptom credibility and level of incentive seeking, was evaluated through a series of multivariate mean comparisons. Data are presented for frequency of falling in the noncredible range on all validity indices. Diagnostic statistics for each index are presented according to hypothetical base rates. Examination of receiving psychological recommendations to obtain external incentive (i.e., academic accommodations, medications, etc.) is reported according to incentive and credibility level. University patients explicitly seeking external gain, particularly those meeting criteria for malingering, demonstrated lower performance on the measures and received a higher rate of recommendations for academic accommodations and/or medications than patients not seeking external incentive. Nevertheless, a number of diagnostic statistics indicated some embedded validity indices lack specificity for malingering in university samples. The current study supports classifying patients according to level of incentive seeking when evaluating neurocognitive performance and feigned or exaggerated deficits.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Wm. Drew Gouvier



Included in

Psychology Commons