Academic journal article The Spanish Journal of Psychology

Assessment of the Behavioral Inhibition System and the Behavioral Approach System: Adaptation and Validation of the Sensitivity to Punishment and Sensitivity to Reward Questionnaire (SPSRQ) in a Chilean Sample

Academic journal article The Spanish Journal of Psychology

Assessment of the Behavioral Inhibition System and the Behavioral Approach System: Adaptation and Validation of the Sensitivity to Punishment and Sensitivity to Reward Questionnaire (SPSRQ) in a Chilean Sample

Article excerpt

The goal of the present study is to estimate the psychometric properties of the Sensitivity to Punishment and Sensitivity to Reward Questionnaire (SPSRQ; Torrubia, Ávila, Moltó, & Caseras, 2001) in a sample of Chilean college students. The main hypothesis is that the instrument would show appropriate levels of reliability and validity, in light of previous validation studies. A pilot study was conducted in order to generate the adapted version of the questionnaire, which was then applied to a student sample from different undergraduate careers (n = 434). The results show the expected levels of reliability (test-retest and internal consistency). The factorial validity does not comply with the expected model, suggesting a further consideration of the structure of the questionnaire. External validity is appropriate, as the questionnaire shows the expected correlations with other personality measures. It is concluded that the SPSRQ is adequate for the context of validation, and this study contributes to the generalization of the questionnaire, since the results are consistent with the expected psychometric properties that have been reported in the literature.

Keywords: sensitivity to punishment, sensitivity to reward, personality, validation, adaptation.

El presente estudio tiene como propósito estimar las propiedades psicométricas del Cuestionario de Sensibilidad al Castigo y Sensibilidad a la Recompensa (SCSR; Torrubia, Ávila, Moltó, y Caseras, 2001) en una muestra de estudiantes chilenos, bajo la hipótesis general de que el instrumento presenta niveles apropiados de fiabilidad y validez, acorde a los estudios previos de validación. Para ello, se condujo inicialmente un estudio piloto que permitió generar la versión adaptada del cuestionario, el cual fue posteriormente aplicado a una muestra definitiva de estudiantes pertenecientes a diferentes carreras universitarias (n = 434). Los resultados muestran los niveles esperados de fiabilidad test-retest y consistencia interna. La validez factorial muestra problemas de ajuste de las escalas según el modelo teórico, sugiriendo una revisión de la estructura del cuestionario. La validez externa, sin embargo, es adecuada y el cuestionario muestra las correlaciones esperadas con otras medidas de personalidad. Se concluye la adecuación del cuestionario SCSR en el contexto de validación y la contribución de este estudio a la generabilidad del instrumento, en tanto los resultados son coherentes con la literatura previa en torno a sus propiedades psicométricas.

Palabras clave: sensibilidad al castigo, sensibilidad a la recompensa, personalidad, validación, adaptación.

Gray's (1982) personality theory, currently called the reinforcement sensitivity theory (RST; Pickering et al., 1997), has been the subject of much discussion in the international literature because of its theoretical and empirical implications. The current version of the RST formulated by Gray and McNaughton (2000) conceives personality as the reflection of individual differences in three brain systems (Corr, 2004, 2008; Smillie, Pickering, & Jackson, 2006): the behavioral inhibition system (BIS), the behavioral activation system (BAS), and the fight-flight-freeze system (FFFS). The BIS is responsible for solving general conflict with goals, by monitoring the focus of danger, providing negative feedback to the organism in order to avoid imminent risky situations. The BAS directs behavior towards appetitive stimuli, both conditioned and unconditioned, by reducing the temporal-spatial distance of the current goal-oriented hedonic state and the final biological reinforcer. Lastly, the FFFS mediates behavior towards all aversive stimuli, conditioned and unconditioned, promoting behaviors of avoidance and escape. The following personality factors, associated with the diverse brain systems, are proposed by the RST: tendency towards concern and anxious rumination (BIS); optimism, orientation towards reward and impulsivity (BAS); and, lastly, tendency towards fear and avoidance (FFFS). …

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