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Date of Award


Degree Type

Dissertation (On-Campus Access Only)

Degree Name

Doctor of Psychology (PsyD)

Committee Chair

Lisa Christiansen, Psy.D.

Second Advisor

Deborah Wise, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Michel Hersen, Ph.D., ABPP


Researchers in the area of the development of PTSD have focused on several different predictor variables of the disorder, including cognitive abilities and general coping styles. This study examined both IQ and coping style as predictor variables in the development ofPTSD. Coping style and IQ was assessed in a forensic population in an effort to determine whether these variables have a significant relationship to PTSD symptom presence and severity. Results are consistent with previous researchers who have found that ineffective coping styles are used more and effective coping styles are used less in those with PTSD. This lends support to the possibility that effective coping styles are protective factors against the development of PTSD. The results related to IQ were different than previous research, as the author of this study found no significant relationships between Full Scale IQ or Verbal IQ and PTSD. However, a significant negative correlation was found between Performance IQ and PTSD. This finding raises the possibility that in a forensic population different cognitive abilities are risk and protective factors in the development of PTSD.


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