In a modest body of research, personality functioning assessed via performance-based instruments has been found to validly predict treatment outcome and, to some extent, differential response to treatment. However, state-of-the-science longitudinal and mixture modeling techniques, which are common in many areas of clinical psychology, have rarely been used. In this article, we compare multilevel growth curve modeling (MLM) and latent class growth modeling (LCGM) approaches with the same data set to illustrate the different research questions that can be addressed by each method. Global Assessment of Functioning (GAF) scores collected at 6 points during the course of a long-term multimodal inpatient treatment of 58 severely and persistently mentally ill adults were used to model the trajectory of treatment outcome. Pretreatment Rorschach-based markers of personality functioning and other markers of psychiatric severity were examined as covariates in each modeling approach. The results of both modeling approaches generally indicated that more psychologically impaired clients responded less favorably to treatment. The LCGM approach revealed 2 unique trajectories of improvement (a persistently low group and a higher starting, improving group). Personality functioning and baseline psychiatric variables significantly predicted group membership and the rate of change within the groups. A side-by-side examination of these 2 methods was found to be useful in predicting differential treatment response with personality functioning variables.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Psychology
- Psychiatry and Mental health
- Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis