Good news for allegedly bad studies. Assessment of psychometric properties may help to elucidate deception in online studies on OCD

Steffen Moritz*, Niels Van Quaquebeke, Marit Hauschildt, Lena Jelinek, Sascha Gönner

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Online surveys are gaining increasing momentum in clinical research. Ease of recruitment and low cost are two of the biggest advantages of Internet studies. There are, however, concerns about their reliability and validity.The present study compared the psychometric properties of self-report instruments measuring obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) across three samples: (1) participants with a confirmed diagnosis of OCD (n=66), (2) participants with a probable diagnosis of OCD (n=86) and (3) clinical experts on OCD and students who were asked to pretend to have OCD (n=121). Psychometric indices of the Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Score (Y-BOCS) and the Obsessive Compulsive Inventory (OCI-R) served as indicators for reliability and validity.Both patient samples revealed good retest reliability scores and good correlations between Y-BOCS and OCI-R scores. In contrast, the expert group showed poor retest reliabilities and mixed results for the intercorrelations between OCI-R and Y-BOCS scores. Simulators display a marked tendency to over-report symptoms on the OCI-R.Good psychometric properties of online studies may serve as a proxy for the validity of diagnoses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)331-335
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Obsessive-Compulsive and Related Disorders
Volume1
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2012
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Deception
  • Internet
  • OCD
  • Online studies
  • Simulation
  • Survey

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