Predicting institutional adjustment with the Psychological Inventory of Criminal Thinking Styles composite scales: Replication and extension

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Abstract

Purpose. The principal aim of this study is to determine whether the Proactive (P) and Reactive (R) composite scales of the Psychological Inventory of Criminal Thinking Styles (PICTS) are capable of predicting institutional adjustment in a group of medium security prison inmates.

Method. The P and R composite scales were correlated with dichotomized and count measures of total, non-aggressive and aggressive incident reports (IRs) received during a 2-year period in a group of 219 male medium security US federal prisoners.

Results. The R scale predicted dichotomized total, non-aggressive, and aggressive IRs (point biserial correlations, receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis, classification analyses) and all three classes of count IRs (negative binomial regression) when age, education, race, marital status, confining offence, prior disciplinary record, program completion and time in the institution were controlled. The P scale, on the other hand, predicted dichotomized total (point biserial correlation, classification analysis) and non-aggressive (point biserial correlation, ROC) IRs and the total disciplinary count when age, education, race, marital status, confining offence, prior disciplinary record, program completion and time in institution were accounted for in a negative binomial regression.

Conclusion. The modest but consistent relationship observed between the R scale and subsequent disciplinary infractions suggests that R may well serve as one component of a larger assessment battery for identifying inmate's at risk for future disciplinary problems.

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