TY - JOUR

T1 - The general factor of psychopathology (p): Choosing among competing models and interpreting p

AU - Caspi, Avshalom

AU - Houts, Renate

AU - Fisher, Helen

AU - Danese, Andrea

AU - Moffitt, Terrie

N1 - Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2023.

PY - 2023/5/3

Y1 - 2023/5/3

N2 - Over the past 10 years, the general factor of psychopathology, p, has attracted interest and scrutiny. We review the history of the idea that all mental disorders share something in common, p; how we arrived at this idea; and how it became conflated with a statistical representation, the bifactor model. We then leverage data from the Environmental Risk Longitudinal Twin Study to examine the properties and nomological network of different statistical representations of p. We found that p performed similarly regardless of how it was modeled, suggesting that if the sample and content are the same, the resulting p factor will be similar. We suggest that the meaning of p is not to be found by dueling over statistical models but by conducting well-specified criterion-validation studies and developing new measurement approaches. We outline new directions to refresh research efforts to uncover what all mental disorders have in common.

AB - Over the past 10 years, the general factor of psychopathology, p, has attracted interest and scrutiny. We review the history of the idea that all mental disorders share something in common, p; how we arrived at this idea; and how it became conflated with a statistical representation, the bifactor model. We then leverage data from the Environmental Risk Longitudinal Twin Study to examine the properties and nomological network of different statistical representations of p. We found that p performed similarly regardless of how it was modeled, suggesting that if the sample and content are the same, the resulting p factor will be similar. We suggest that the meaning of p is not to be found by dueling over statistical models but by conducting well-specified criterion-validation studies and developing new measurement approaches. We outline new directions to refresh research efforts to uncover what all mental disorders have in common.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85158851063&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1177/21677026221147872

DO - 10.1177/21677026221147872

M3 - Article

SN - 2167-7026

JO - Clinical Psychological Science

JF - Clinical Psychological Science

ER -