Is the Association of Multidimensional Schizotypy with Symptoms and Impairment Invariant Across People from Different Racial Backgrounds?


The present study examined the extent to which the association of psychometric schizotypy with symptoms and impairment is invariant across racial groups. Clinicians and researchers employ a variety of tools to assess psychopathology. Therefore, it is imperative that these measures work comparably across people from differing backgrounds and demographic characteristics. Measures that lack cross-cultural validity risk introducing both Type I error (erroneously concluding that there are meaningful effects) due to overdiagnosis of symptoms and disorders, as well as Type II (failure to detect meaningful findings) due to failure to tap such symptoms and impairment equally well in different populations. Thus, if a measure is not psychometrically sound or void of biases, studies comparing symptoms and impairment in different groups of people may be rendered invalid and misleading. If the development of assessment measures are largely limited to people from narrow backgrounds and demographic representations, there is a real risk that these measures may lack adequate psychometric properties for groups from differing backgrounds. Furthermore, the psychometric properties and validity of all measures should be demonstrated across people from diverse backgrounds to determine the applicability of the assessment tool. Unfortunately, measures have often been developed on narrow samples, limiting the applicability of these measures to people outside of these groups.

Katrina Rbeiz
Katrina Rbeiz
PhD Student

Third Culture Kid | Researcher | Writer