The rorschach index of egocentricity in normal and psychopathological groups and its relationship to other cognitive-perceptual measures



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In Exner's system of scoring the Rorschach, a structural summary is calculated from the scored responses. One of the indices on the summary, the pair-reflection index, is one which is new with this system. Exner has related this index to the concept of egocentricity, but the validity of the construct is still in question. This dissertation reports the results of a study which examined this structural feature of the Rorschach, in an effort to validate the construct of egocentricity for the pair-reflection index. Forty-four subjects were selected, including 8 acute schizophrenic inpatients, 8 chronic schizophrenic inpatients, 8 nonschizophrenic psychotic inpatients, and 20 normal controls. After selection and a brief screening for average or above IQ, subjects were administered the Rorschach, the Personal Orientation Inventory, and the Rod-and-Frame Test, and asked to make up a fantasy story. These particular measures were chosen on the basis of their conceptual and empirical relationships to psychological development, and the processes of differentiation and integration. It was reasoned that an egocentric individual would be psychologically immature and therefore would obtain lower scores on measures designed to assess levels of psychological development. The first approach taken in testing the validity of the construct of egocentricity for the index, was to establish the relationships among test measures which have been conceptually and empirically related to the concept of egocentricity or its characteristic features. The second approach relates to the selection of the subjects. The schizophrenic group was chosen on the basis of their conceptual and empirical relationship to arrested development and narcissism. If a relationship were established between the Rorschach pair-reflection index and one or more of the other measures of egocentric!ty, or if a group considered egocentric scored low on these measures and were rated as egocentric by the index, then the construct might be validated. Univariate (analysis of variance) and multivariate (principal components and cluster analysis) statistical techniques were utilized for data analysis. The results of the analysis of variance and principal components analysis failed to support a hypothesis of convergent validity, although two variables from a fantasy rating scale (related to differentiation of the main figure and self-representation) were found to be associated with the pair-refl ection index. Results of the cluster analysis showed that clusters of individuals whose test profiles were similar tended to perform at consistent levels across the test measures. Five clusters were derived, and it was found that those groups with a high mean pair-refl ection score tended to perform at lower developmental levels. Conversely, those who performed at more mature levels obtained a pair-reflection score which was in the medium range. The conclusion was that the pair-reflection index as a measure of egocentricity may have some validity in that those subjects who obtained a high pair-reflection score tended to perform at lower developmental levels on these tests considered to be measures of psychological maturity.