Implication of Schizotypy as a Personality Trait
Gruzelier (1996) suggest that “schizotypy consists mainly of impulsive
non-conformity, social anxiety, positive features such as unusual
perceptions, and negative features such as introversions.” (Cited in
Miller P, et al. 2002, p.179).
In this essay one would like to explore the definition given to
‘schizotypy’ and to give a brief discussion on this concept and
whether schizotypy is a single trait or whether there are more factors
to be considered, for it was conceptualized by Eysenck as a single
personality trait named psychoticism, however it was Claridge's work
that suggested that this personality trait was much more complex, and
that such scales, namely Ensenck’s psychoticism scale (P), “tap up to
four different components that map onto the clinical heterogeneity of
schizophrenia (and potentially other forms of psychosis)” (Mason, O.
1995, P.272). And so therefore this leads onto another question of, if
it is not a single trait then what are the other factors?
This essay will also look into the differences with other similar
constructs such as schizophrenia, and whether there are aspects of
schizotypy that predict future schizophrenia? Finally discussing
evidence in coherence to these questions and the types of instruments
used, e.g. questionnaires and structured interviews, and how reliable
these can be, finishing with a general overview of how one might
perceive a personality trait to be, in specific relation to
Schizotypy is the term used which refers to people who function
completely normally, but show reduced levels of the cognitive,
emotional and attention problems which are found in an exaggerated
form of schizophrenic subjects. (Cooper, 2002, p. 146). It was also
suggested by Cooper that the concept of schizotypy, therefore, is said
to have much in common with Eysenck’s idea of psychoticism. (Psychoticism
is one of the three traits used by the psychologist Hans Eysenck in
his P-E-N model (psychoticism, extraversion and neuroticism) model of
- 20k ) Both these traits are thought to predict the risk of
developing schizophrenia, but researchers such as Claridge have tried
to predetermine all the main symptoms of schizophrenia from the
clinical to the non-clinical population. It was said that Eysenck
focused more on impulsive, sensation seeking, cruel and solitary
behaviors, who only mildly referred to the perceptual distortions or
cognitive and attention problems. Therefore he concluded that even if
the traits have some similarities, they are unlikely to be identical.
(Cooper, 2002, pp. 146-7).
To determine whether schizotypy is a single trait can be complicated
in the fact that if a personality disorder...