Measurement of thinking dysfunction an empirical study

Toksoz B. Karasu, Robert Plutchik, Paul Nemetz, Hope R. Conte

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations


This investigation is concerned with the development of a practical method for assessment of thought disorders. A review of eight major textbooks and four review articles revealed 37 different terms used to describe the components of thought disorders. Because of overlap of meanings or ambiguous usage, these terms were reduced to 17 discrete terms that could be operationally defined. Twenty-five psychiatrists were surveyed on the appropriateness of the definitions and their relevance to the concept of thought disorder. An average of 83 per cent agreement was obtained, and some of the definitions were modified as a result of the survey. Eight psychiatrists then applied this scale, titled the Thinking Dysfunction Rating Scale, to the evaluation of five videotaped patient interviews. Based on observation of all five patients, interjudge agreement was over 90 per cent for all items of the scale. Analysis of variance showed that the scale significantly discriminated among schizophrenics, patients with organic brain syndromes, psychotic depressives, geriatric depressives, and outpatients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)696-703
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Nervous and Mental Disease
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1979

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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