Award Date

5-1-2012

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Educational Research Cognition and Development

First Committee Member

W. Paul Jones

Second Committee Member

Rebecca Nathanson

Third Committee Member

Scott Loe

Fourth Committee Member

Jesse Brinson

Number of Pages

130

Abstract

In 2002, the Supreme Court ruled that it is unconstitutional to put people with mental retardation to death for capital crimes (Atkins v. Virginia, 2002). Justice Scalia dissented, suggesting that mental retardation is a condition easy to feign. The current study examined whether participants provided with the definition of mental retardation and adaptive behavior ("informed malingering group") are any better at malingering having mental retardation than participants not provided with the definitions ("malingering group"). Three groups of participants participated in this study: the control group, the malingering group, and the informed malingering group. All participants completed an intellectual assessment and two adaptive behavior assessments. Results revealed that there were no statistically significant differences in performance on any of the assessments between the two malingering conditions, and both groups over exaggerated their deficits to an extent that their malingering attempts were conspicuous.

Keywords

Adaptability (Psychology); Adjustment (Psychology); Adaptive behavior; Atkins v Virginia; Capital punishment; Legal; Malinger; Malingering; Mental retardation

Disciplines

Applied Behavior Analysis | Criminal Law | Educational Psychology | Law

Language

English


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