MMPI-2 RC Scales
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MMPI-2 RC Scales

Qualification Level: C

Author: Auke Tellegen, PhD

An Efficient Tool for Interpreting MMPI-2 Results

The new Restructured Clinical (RC) Scales preserve the valuable descriptive features of the existing MMPI-2 Clinical Scales and enhance their distinctiveness. In January 2003, a new profile form and answer keys for the RC Scales were added to the hand-scoring materials. The RC Scales profile is provided in the Extended Score Report, in addition to the Validity/Clinical Scales profile.

Experienced RC Scale Users

The RC Scales can serve as a road map, orienting users to the psychological problems indicated by MMPI-2 results. The Clinical, Content, and Supplementary Scales provide corroboration and elaboration of these results.

New RC Scale Users

The RC Scales clarify the MMPI-2 Clinical Scale profile. By preserving the valuable descriptive and distinctive features of the Clinical Scales, the RC Scales provide a more clearly focused interpretation.

University of Minnesota Press Test Monograph

The development, validation, and interpretation of the RC Scales is documented in a Test Monograph published by the University of Minnesota Press and authored by:

Auke Tellegen, Yossef S. Ben-Porath, John L. McNulty, Paul A. Arbisi, John R. Graham, and Beverly Kaemmer

In addition to providing psychometric information, the RC Scales Test Monograph illustrates how RC Scales results can serve to clarify interpretive implications of clinical scale scores, providing the kind of refinement offered by tools like the Harris-Lingoes subscales.

RC Scales Development

Auke Tellegen, PhD, Psychometric Consultant to the University of Minnesota Press

"Shortly after the restandardization of the original MMPI┬« was completed, development began on a set of restructured Clinical Scales. Because a major goal of the restandardization had been to maintain substantial continuity between the original and the revised instruments, the Clinical Scales were virtually unchanged in the MMPI-2. However, it was recognized that with the restandardization accomplished, a worthwhile next step would be to explore possible modifications of the Clinical Scales.

My goal in developing the Restructured Clinical Scales was to preserve the valuable predictive features of the existing Clinical Scales while attempting to improve their distinctiveness. As a first step I constructed a demoralization scale, extracting the general complaint or malaise factor represented to some degree in each of the Clinical Scales and in virtually all other MMPI-2 scales. I then identified the major dimensions of eight of the ten Clinical Scales, excepting scales 5 and 0. Based on these analyses and using the entire MMPI-2 item pool, I developed a set of scales representing these dimensions:

RCd dem Demoralization
RC1 som Somatic Complaints
RC2 lpe Low Positive Emotions
RC3 cyn Cynicism
RC4 asb Antisocial Behavior
RC6 per Ideas of Persecution
RC7 dne Dysfunctional Negative Emotions
RC8 abx Aberrant Experiences
RC9 hpm Hypomanic Activation

Yossef Ben-Porath joined me in the crucial phase of validating and refining the new RC Scales."

Sample Report Profile

This sample illustrates the new RC Scales profile in the Extended Score Report. This profile is provided in addition to the Validity/Clinical Scales profile to help clinicians refine their interpretation:

RC Scales Validation

Yossef S. Ben-Porath, PhD, MMPI Consultant to the University of Minnesota Press

"We conducted extensive validation analyses with several large outpatient and inpatient samples. We found that in comparison with their original Clinical Scale counterparts, the RC Scales possess substantially improved discriminant validity, comparable or better convergent validity, and clearer ties to contemporary models of personality and psychopathology. The RC Scales simplify MMPI-2 interpretation and enhance the construct validity of the test."

Further research will ultimately determine what role the RC Scales will play in MMPI-2 test interpretation. Because the scales were created from the MMPI-2 item pool, studies can be conducted on previously collected MMPI-2 data. We encourage researchers and practitioners to explore the utility of the RC Scales."

Frequently Asked Questions

Review a list of Frequently Asked Questions.

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