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Date of Award


Degree Type

Thesis (On-Campus Access Only)

Degree Name

Master of Science in Psychology

Committee Chair

Michelle R. Guyton, Ph.D.


This study aims to examine personality differences in females with violent and nonviolent index offenses. The participants were 1875 female offenders incarcerated in the Oregon Department of Corrections between 2000 and 2005. The population was separated into two groups based on their index offence (what they are currently incarcerated for). The violent index offense group was comprised of 500 women who were incarcerated for committing a crime against a person (assault, murder, rape, etc ... ). The nonviolent index offense group was comprised of 1375 women who were incarcerated for committing a crime against property or a statute crime. This archival study was conducted based on a previously compiled database that was gathered upon intake and inmate processing from 2000 to 2005. All offenders who had at least a fourth grade reading level completed the Personality Assessment Inventory during their intake to the Oregon Correctional system and were included in the study. The design used was semi-experimental and archival. The main findings are that, based on their scores on the P AI, the two groups of female offenders do not differ in their overall Borderline personality scores and that they differ in the opposite direction than expected on the Antisocial Personality score. The females with violent index offenses scored lower than the females with nonviolent index offenses. However, some interesting differences were found in the subscales. The violent index offense group scored higher in the affectivity subscale of the Borderline scale (BOR-A), and lower in the self-mutilation scale (BORS).


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