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elsayed November 27th, 2004 04:06 PM

looking for cognitive distiorions scales
i am searching in the field of cognitive therapy and its relation to vocational stress and i am looking for scales detecting the cognitive distortions and negative automatic thoughts
i want your help

James Pretzer December 6th, 2004 10:50 PM

Re: looking for cognitive distiorions scales
Many different measures have been used to assess cognitive distortions and dysfunctional cognitions. I did a quick, unsystematic literature search and saw the following measures mentioned: the Adolescent Cognitions Scale-Revised , the How I Think Questionnaire, the CTJSO (Cognition and Treatment of Juvenile Sex Offenders) Survey, the Irrational Beliefs Test, the Cognition Checklist, the Dysfunctional Attitude Scale, the Automatic Thought Questionnaire (S. D. Hollon and P. C. Kendall, 1980), the Children's Negative Cognitive Errors Questionnaire, the Negative and Positive Cognitive Error Questionnaire, the Abel and Becker Cognition Scale, and the How I Think (HIT) Questionnaire.

Here are a number of relevant abstracts (note that self-report questionnaires aren't the only option):

Bonifazi, D. Z.; Crowther, J. H.; Mizes, J. S. (2000). Validity of questionnaires for assessing dysfunctional cognitions in bulimia nervosa. International Journal of Eating Disorders. 27(4), May 2000, 464-470.
Abstract Investigated the validity of the Bulimic Cognitive Distortions Scale (BCDS) and the Mizes Anorectic Cognitions Questionnaire (MAC). The ability of these questionnaires to discriminate among individuals with bulimia, restrained eaters, and normals was also investigated. Scores on these retrospective self-report questionnaires were compared to cognitions assessed via in vivo thought-sampling. Cognitions of 15 women with bulimia nervosa (mean age 20.1 yrs), 15 restrained eaters (mean age 19.5 yrs), and 15 non-eating disordered women (mean age 19.4 yrs) were assessed. Results indicated that both the BCDS and the MAC successfully discriminated among individuals with bulimia, restrained eaters, and normals, and adequately measured in vivo attitudes and beliefs associated with food and eating, weight and body-image, and low self-efficacy. These findings support the continued use of both the BCDS and the MAC.

Vanhouche, W.; Vertommen, H. (1999). Assessing cognitive distortions in sex offenders: A review of commonly used versus recently developed instruments. Psychologica Belgica. 39(2-3), 1999, 163-187
Abstract Researchers studying cognitive distortions of sex offenders have focused most of their efforts into developing psychometrically robust measures of dysfunctional beliefs and attitudes. Eight scales designed to assess cognitive distortions in sex offenders are discussed in this paper: 4 commonly accepted and widely used measures, and 4 recently developed instruments. The authors conclude that although some questionnaires are able to discriminate between target and control groups, several are open to social desirability bias. Only 1 scale, the Child Molest Scale, is able to discriminate between a target group not promised anonymity and a control group. Although this instrument may herald a new step in the domain of assessment of cognitive distortions, it is argued that future tests should tap automatic processing in an attempt to avoid contamination by social desirability factors.

Shafran, R.; Teachman, B. A.; Kerry, S.; Rachman, S. (1999). A cognitive distortion associated with eating disorders: Thought-shape fusion. British Journal of Clinical Psychology. 38(2), Jun 1999, 167-179
Abstract The primary objective of this study was to describe and investigate a cognitive distortion associated with eating psychopathology. This distortion, termed "thought-shape fusion" (TSF), is said to occur when merely thinking about eating a forbidden food increases the person's estimate of their shape or weight, elicits a perception of moral wrongdoing and makes the person feel fat. Two studies were conducted. The first was a psychometric study and the second utilized a within-participants experimental design. In Study 1, TSF was assessed in a sample of 119 college students using a questionnaire. In Study 2, 30 college students with high TSF scores participated in an experiment designed to elicit the distortion. TSF was found to be significantly associated with measures of eating disorder psychopathology. The questionnaire used to measure TSF had high internal consistency, a good factor structure accounting for 46.2% of the variance and predictive validity. The results from Study 2 indicated that the distortion can be elicited under experimental conditions, produces negative emotional reactions and prompts the urge to engage in corrective behavior (e.g., neutralizing/checking). This corrective behavior promptly reduces the negative reactions.

Lefebvre, M. F. (1981). Cognitive distortion and cognitive errors in depressed psychiatric and low back pain patients. Journal of Consulting & Clinical Psychology. 49(4), Aug 1981, 517-525
Abstract Measured the tendency to make cognitive errors in 18 depressed psychiatric patients, 19 depressed low back pain (LBP) patients, 29 nondepressed LBP patients, and 23 nondepressed persons without LBP. Ss were administered 2 cognitive error questionnaires that focused in either general or LBP-related life experiences. These were designed to measure general cognitive distortion as well as 4 empirically derived dysphoric cognitive errors (catastrophizing, overgeneralization, personalization, and selective abstraction). Results indicate that all cognitive errors were endorsed significantly more strongly by depressed Ss with or without LBP. Although depressed LBP Ss made cognitive errors in interpreting many general experiences, they endorsed 3 out of 4 errors focused on LBP experiences significantly more strongly than depressed nonpain Ss. Findings suggest that depression in LBP patients is a function of both LBP and cognitive errors. Thus, cognitive therapy designed to correct cognitive errors may alleviate depression in LBP patients despite the persistence of pain. (29 ref)

Perrez, M.; Wilhelm, P. (2000). Control psychology under the control of questionnaires? The search for an alternative assessment procedure. In:Perrig, Walter J. (Ed); Grob, Alexander (Ed) (2000). Control of human behavior, mental processes, and consciousness: Essays in honor of the 60th birthday of August Flammer. (pp. 245-261). Mahwah, NJ, US: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Publishers. (2000), xi, 603 pp.
Abstract Describes the development of a method to allow access to control and attribution related psychological phenomena and which allows new theoretical questions that are difficult to test with traditional questionnaires. Typical trait oriented questionnaires for revealing individual differences, e.g. concerning locus of control, query the subjects' generalized cognitive representation of their beliefs, behavior, emotional reaction, etc. They usually do not record concrete beliefs or behavior in concrete situation or specific emotions in specific situations, and if they do so, they rely heavily on the subjects' memory. An assessment strategy is described that avoids the impairing effects on validity of usual--and especially of retrospective--self-report data. The procedure should allow (a) assessment of positive mood and emotions as well as stressful episodes in daily life and the social and environmental conditions in which these states and events occur, (b) the time lag between the event and its recording should be as short as possible, and (c) the method should assess psychologically relevant data, not using a diary free text self description. The use of such an assessment, a systematic family self observation method, with 267 Ss (aged 13-60 yrs) is studied.

Molina, S.; Borkovec, T. D.; Peasley, C.; Person, D. (1998). Content analysis of worrisome streams of consciousness in anxious and dysphoric participants. Cognitive Therapy & Research. 22(2), Apr 1998, 109-123.
Abstract 45 female college students completed questionnaires assessing worry and anxiety. Ss were divided into 3 S groups: 13 Ss met generalized anxiety disorder criteria, 15 met criteria for dysphoric disorder, and 17 controls. Examination of the streams-of-consciousness content of Ss during neutral and worry periods revealed that worrying in general was associated with (1) being less present focused; (2) experiencing elevated levels of negatively valenced, high arousal affect; (3) referencing the immediate environment to a lesser degree; (4) more frequent occurrence of words reflecting cognitive distortions; and (5) shifting from one topic to another topic to a lesser extent. Significant group differences in the use of specific theoretically relevant words and statements were found. Compared to dysphoric and control participants, anxious participants used a higher relative frequency of somatic anxiety words, statements implying catastrophic interpretations of events, and statements implying a rigid, rule-bound manner of interpreting events. Additionally, the results reveal that dysphoric participants made use of derivatives of the word worry at an exceptionally high frequency.

Steenbergh, T. A.; Meyers, A. W.; May, R. K.; Whelan, J. P. (2002). Development and validation of the Gamblers' Beliefs Questionnaire. Psychology of Addictive Behaviors. 16(2), Jun 2002, 143-149.
Abstract The Gamblers' Beliefs Questionnaire (GBQ) is a self-report measure of gamblers' cognitive distortions. GBQ test items were constructed on the basis of theory, empirical evidence, and expert review. Four hundred three adults completed the initial set of items, and 21 items werr selected to make up the final GBQ. The factor structure of the GBQ consisted of 2 closely related factors: Luck/Perseverance and Illusion of Control. The full scale showed good internal consistency (α = .92) and adequate test-retest reliability (r = .77). Problem and pathological gamblers scored higher than nonproblem gamblers on the GBQ and its factors. GBQ scores were moderately correlated with the duration of gambling sessions among problem and pathological gamblers, and there was no relationship between GBQ scores and social desirability.

Moss-Morris, R. & Petrie, K. J. (1997). Cognitive distortions of somatic experiences: Revision and validation of a measure. Journal of Psychosomatic Research. 43(3), Sep 1997, 293-306.
Abstract Reports on the revision of the Cognitive Errors Questionnaire (CEQ), originally developed to measure cognitive distortions specific to chronic pain. The CEQ--Revised (CEQ--R) contains 2 subscales: Somatic--distortions specific to somatic experiences; and General--distortions to everyday life events. Validation of the scale with a total of 141 chronic fatigue syndrome, depressed, and chronic pain and healthy control Ss (aged 18-65 yrs) confirms the CEQ--R loads onto general and somatic factors. Both subscales have high internal consistency and good test-retest reliability. The pattern of Ss' responses to the CEQ--R scores show that the depressed group scored significantly higher on the General CEQ--R scale than the other groups, whereas the fatigue and chronic pain groups scored higher than healthy controls on the Somatic CEQ--R. Somatic CEQ--R scores showed a significant decrease over the course of a pain management program, with a concomitant decrease in disability and depression scores. Further analyses showed the Somatic CEQ--R to be significantly related to self and symptom focusing, whereas the General CEQ--R was found to be significantly correlated with higher depression, lower self-esteem, and self focusing.

Hamamci, Z & Büyükoztürk, S. (2004). The interpersonal cognitive distortions scale: Development and psychometric characteristics. Psychological Reports. 95(1), Aug 2004, 291-303.
Abstract In this study, an Interpersonal Cognitive Distortions Scale was developed to assess cognitive distortions in individuals' interpersonal relationships. The sample comprised 425 university students. A factor analysis yielded three factors: Interpersonal Rejection, Unrealistic Relationship Expectation and Interpersonal Misperception. To examine construct validity the correlations between the scores on the Interpersonal Cognitive Distortions Scale and the Automatic Thoughts Scale (.54), the Irrational Belief Scale (.54), and the Conflict Tendency Scale (.53) were estimated. The first factor, the second factor, and the total scale discriminated married individuals who had low and high conflict intensity and conflict frequency. The reliability of the scale was estimated by performing a test-retest correlation (.74). Cronbach internal consistency coefficient alpha was .67.

Barriga, A Q. & Gibbs, J. C. (1996). Measuring cognitive distortion in antisocial youth: Development and preliminary validation of the "How I Think" Questionnaire. Aggressive Behavior. 22(5), 1996, 333-343.
Abstract Describes the development and preliminary validation of the "How I Think" Questionnaire (HIT), a new measure of self-serving cognitive distortion. The HIT is based upon the J. C. Gibbs et al (1995) 4-category typology of cognitive distortion: Self-Centered, Blaming Others, Minimizing/Mislabeling, and Assuming the Worst. In a study involving 147 male 14-20-yr-olds, 55 of whom were incarcerated at a juvenile correctional facility, the preliminary HIT exhibited high test-retest and internal consistency reliability, and generally good construct validity. Correlations between the HIT and self-reported antisocial or externalizing behavior remained significant after controlling for internalizing disorders. The 4 typological categories performed comparably well. The HIT was partially successful in discriminating criterion groups.

danielmg March 9th, 2005 11:55 AM

Re: looking for cognitive distiorions scales
I would like to have more information about the scales. If possible the references about the scales you mentioned.

James Pretzer March 11th, 2005 05:36 PM

For more detailed information on cognitive distortion scales
The best way to get more information on the cognitive distortion scales mentioned in the abstracts I posted is to go to your nearest university library and see about locating the full article. You could also write to the author for a reprint. You probably can locate the author's email address or mailing address by checking the AABT/ABCT directory at

Unfortunately, I do not have the resources to locate articles and post them in this forum (there also would be copyright problems if I posted articles).

danielmg March 12th, 2005 02:10 PM

Re: looking for cognitive distiorions scales
I will try to get the mails at the AABT site. God idea. Thanks.

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