Thigpen and Cleckley Core Study Slides

Report
INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES
Core Study 1: Thigpen & Cleckley (1954)
A case of Multiple Personality (1954)
Thigpen, H.C and Cleckley, H. Journal of Abnormal and
Social Psychology, 49, 135-151
Content Page
1. Approach & Behaviour
2. Aim & Hypothesis
3. Method
4. Design
5. Sample/Participants
6. Procedure
7. Data Collection
8. Results/Findings
9. Conclusions
10. Exam Style Questions
SLIDES
1. Approach & Behaviour:

Individual Differences Approach

Insight into personality and personality disorder
2. Aim & Hypothesis: Thigpen & Cleckley

What was the aim of this study?

Where does an aim come from?
AIM


The aim of this article was to provide an account of
the psychotherapeutic treatment of a 25-year-old
woman who was referred to Thigpen and Cleckley
because of 'severe and blinding headaches'.
Her marriage was failing and she had a 4 year old
daughter whom she was very worried about
3. Method: Thigpen & Cleckley
METHOD

The psychiatrists used a case study method

In depth study into one person
5. Sample & Participants: Thigpen & Cleckley
One person: Eve Black
 Her pseudonym was Eve but her real name was
Christine Sizemore.

4. Design: Thigpen & Cleckley

Interviews with the patient and her family

Hypnosis

Observation

EEG tests

Psychometric and projective tests including, memory
tests, ink blot tests and intelligence tests.
6. Procedure of treatment: Thigpen & Cleckley




Psychotherapeutic interviews
Interviews with family members
Hypnosis sessions
Psychological tests:
1.
2.
3.
Psychometric tests: to look at IQ and memory
Projective tests: to focus on unconscious wishes and
desires
Electroencephalogram (EEG)
What happened after treatment began?



Eve was initially interviewed irregularly. During this time it
became obvious that she had a number of emotional
problems.
Eve White’s husband also reported that Eve had been
behaviour in a strange manner – for example, going into
town and buying an array of expensive clothes, which as
completely out of character.
During the next interview, Eve White showed signs of stress
and agitation, which prompted the appearance of Eve
Black. The new Eve explained that the blackouts Eve White
suffered were when she was out, but that Eve White had
no awareness of her.
What happened after treatment began?





Over the next 14 months, both Eves were interviewed for
approximately 100 hours in total.
Initially, Eve White had to be hypnotised to let Eve Black out,
but over time she came out when called.
Both personalities were very different. Eve White was demure,
retiring, neat, colourless, honest and serious. Eve Black was
mischievous, childish, a party girl, egocentric and provocative.
After 8 months Eve White seemed to have made progress, but
then the headaches and blackouts returned.
At one of the therapy sessions, while talking about her
childhood, she became sleepy, and Jane emerged. She was
aware of both Eves, but was distinctly different, being mature,
sincere, capable and interesting. She seemed to be the most
balanced personality of the three.
7. Data Collection: Thigpen & Cleckley
8. Results/Findings: Thigpen & Cleckley
1.
2.
3.
Not long into therapy, Eve explained that she heard voices that
were becoming more and more frequent and expressed a fear that
she was going mad. This prompted the appearance of a second
personality Eve Black. After this, the headaches and blackouts
improved.
After 8 months of therapy, the situation changed for the worse. Eve
White’s headaches and blackouts returned. During one session of
hypnosis, the third person- Jane appeared.
Jane appeared to be the most balanced of the three personalities,
and the one Thigpen and Cleckley felt should be encouraged to
take over. However they realised that it was not their responsibility
to make this decision, and this study ends with the three faces of Eve
still in existence.
8. Results/Findings: Thigpen & Cleckley
4. Results of the Psychological Tests:
 IQ test: EW 110, EB 104
 Memory scales: EW had a superior memory function to EB
 Rorschach test (inkblot test): EW was emotionally repressed, EB
had a tendency to regress.
5. Results of EEG test:
 Tenseness was most pronounced in EB, next EW and then Jane
 EW and Jane: 11 cycles per second (normal), EB: 12.5 cycles
per second (slightly fast, sometimes associated with
psychopathic personality).
Results of therapy



Purpose of therapy is to help resolve the clients
problems. In previously documented cases the
secondary ego was found to help the primary. This
did not seem to be the case here.
Therapists tried to make matters better for EW by
asking EB to help. EB generally made things worse
for EW.
Tried to fuse personalities together but this did not
seem to be working.
Emergence of Jane




After about 8 months of therapy a third personality
emerged.
She lacked EB’s more obvious faults but was more
vivid and interesting than EW.
Interestingly EW and Jane had same EEG reading
but EB was faster(associated with psychopathic
personality).
Was seen that Jane would be he most likely to
integrate the 3 personalities and provide solution to
therapy.
9. Conclusions: Thigpen & Cleckley
1.
2.
3.
Eve White/Christine Sizemore was suffering MPD.
They did admit that there was a possibility that Eve
could be faking the different personalities –
however this in unlikely given the time spent
interviewing her.
Were convinced that the study demonstrated a
clear case of MPD, rather than any other hysterical
conversion or dissociation.
10. Exam Style Questions
Section A
January 2010

Describe two personalities in the Thigpen
and Cleckley’s study into MPD. (4)
June 2011
In Thigpen and Cleckley:

Outline two ethical problems in Thigpen
and Cleckly’s study on MPD. (4)
June 2010
In Thigpen and Cleckley:

What is a longitudinal study? (2)

Outline one weakness of longitudinal
research used in this study. (2)
January 2012
In Thigpen and Cleckley used self-report to
gather data:

Identify two other methods used. (2)

Describe one limitation of using the selfreport method to gather data. (2)

January 2011
In Thigpen and Cleckley:

Outline one projective test used. (2)

Suggest one problem with projective tests
use in this study. (2)
June 2012
In Thigpen and Cleckley:

Describe two pieces of evidence which
could support the claim that the patient
did have MPD
Section A
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
Outline two features of MPD (4)
a. Describe the research method used in this study (2)
Outline two of the personalities identified in this study
(4)
Identify two psychological tests used in this study (2)
Outline the results of the EEG conducted in this study
(4)
Describe two pieces of evidence that indicate Eve was
suffering from MPD (4)
10. Exam Style Questions
Section B
June 2014
1.
Outline why your chosen study was conducted. (2)
2.
Describe how the self-report method was used to gather
data in your chosen study. (4)
3.
Describe one strength and one weakness of gathering
data using self-reports. Support your answer with
evidence from your chosen study. (6)
4.
Outline the findings from your chosen study. (8)
5.
Suggest improvements to your chosen study. (8)
6.
Evaluate the improvements you have suggested to your
chosen study. (8)
10. Exam Style Questions
Section B
January 2013
1.
Briefly outline the aim of your chosen study. (2)
2.
Explain why your chosen study may be considered a
longitudinal study. (2)
3.
With reference to your chosen study, suggest one strength
and one weakness of longitudinal studies. (8)
4.
Outline the results of your chosen study. (8)
5.
Discuss the usefulness of observation as a way of
gathering data in your chosen study. (8)
6.
Identify and evaluate two possible changes to your chosen
study. (8)
10. Exam Style Questions
Section B
June 2010
1.
What is the aim of your chosen study. (2)
2.
Describe why the sample was selected for your chosen
study and suggest one disadvantage of this sample. (6)
3.
Give two advantages of the case study method as used in
your chosen study. (6)
4.
Give two disadvantages of the case study method as used
in your chosen study. (6)
5.
Outline the results of your chosen study. (8)
6.
Suggest how your chosen study could be improved. Give
reason for your answer. (8)
10. Exam Style Questions
Section C
June 2013/January 10 (same set of questions)
1.
Outline one assumption of the individual difference approach. (2)
2.
With reference to Thigpen and Cleckley’s study, describe how the individual difference
approach could explain MPD. (4)
3.
Describe one similarity and one difference between any studies that take the individual
difference approach. (6)
4.
Discuss strengths and weaknesses of the individual difference approach using examples
from studies that take this approach. (12)
June 2011
1.
Outline one assumption of the Psychodynamic Perspective. (2)
2.
Describe how the Psychodynamic Perspective could explain MPD. (4)
3.
Describe one similarity and difference between any studies that could be viewed for the
psychodynamic perspective. (6)
4.
Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the psychodynamic perspective using examples
from any studies that could be viewed from this perspective. (12)

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