Psychology ETDs

Publication Date

Fall 12-15-2022


Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is one of the most suffered injuries with detrimental effects on the individual’s health, personality, and behavior. Overlap exists between TBI sequelae and symptoms of psychopathy. Both conditions are especially prevalent in incarcerated populations which makes studying their interrelation critical. Two studies examined the relationship between history of TBI (TBI+ vs. TBI-) and psychopathy (via the Hare Psychopathy Checklist-Revised; PCL-R) in adult incarcerated men and women at correctional facilities in New Mexico and Wisconsin. Study 1 included 342 women, study 2 included 1049 men. Measurement invariance was evident for TBI+ and TBI- for both studies. TBI+ showed higher PCL-R scores for both men and women alike, indicating higher psychopathic traits compared to those without a history of TBI. These studies are the first ones to link TBI and psychopathy in adult individuals. Implications for prevention and treatment are discussed, and directions for future research are suggested.

Degree Name


Level of Degree


Department Name


First Committee Member (Chair)

Marco Del Giudice

Second Committee Member

Kent A. Kiehl

Third Committee Member

Steven W. Gangestad

Fourth Committee Member

Davin K. Quinn




Psychopathy, Traumatic Brain Injury, PCL-R, Women, Men

Document Type


Included in

Psychology Commons