International Journal of Psychology and Psychological Therapy

Volume 13 Num. 2 - June 2013


Psychometric Evaluation of a Shortened Version of the 40-item Defense Style Questionnaire

Volume 13 Num. 2 - June 2013 - Pages 215-224


Carine Saint-Martin , Marjorie Valls , Am?lie Rousseau , Stacey Callahan , Henri Chabrol


The 40-item version of the Defense Style Questionnaire (DSQ-40) is a widely used self-report measure of defense mechanisms. A previous study, however, has suggested that 12 items out of 40 are lacking in face validity. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the psychometric properties of a shortened version of the DSQ-40, deleting the items with insufficient face validity (DSQ-28), in a non-clinical sample of university students. Exploratory factor analysis extracted a five-factor structure. The pattern of relationships for the five factors along with coping strategies assessed by the Ways of Coping Checklist, short version (WCCL), general psychopathological symptoms, evaluated by the Symptom Checklist 90-Revised (SCL-90 R), and personality disorder symptoms, explored through the Personality Diagnostic Questionnaire, Fourth Edition (PDQ-4), suggests that this 28 item-version of the DSQ may have better discriminant and criterion validity than the DSQ-40.

Key words:

DSQ-40, defense mechanisms, coping strategies, personality disorders, psychopathological symptoms

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