The Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI): Treatment Scales and Interpersonal Characteristics in a Sample of Men Charged with or Convicted of a Sexual Offense

J Forensic Sci. 2020 Nov;65(6):2050-2057. doi: 10.1111/1556-4029.14512. Epub 2020 Jul 21.


An individual's interpersonal features are pertinent to treatment within clinical populations. The Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI) contains two scales that assess the interpersonal features of warmth (WRM) and dominance (DOM), as well as two additional measures to assess to treatment prediction, process, and rejection (RXR; TPI). The current study examined associations between these PAI scales in a sample of 92 men who underwent comprehensive evaluations of sexual behavior after being charged with or convicted of a sexual offense. Analyses indicated that RXR was positively associated with WRM and DOM, TPI was negatively associated with WRM, and the two interpersonal scales of WRM and DOM were positively correlated with each other. A significant inverse relationship was found between the two treatment scales RXR and TPI indicating that motivation for treatment may have a limited relationship with the treatment process. WRM significantly predicted scores on the TPI, and both WRM and DOM predicted individual scores on RXR. Higher scores on positive impression management (PIM) were predictive of lower TPI and higher RXR, as individuals with higher stakes cases may score higher on PIM and underreport obstacles within treatment or be unwilling to accept the need for treatment. Overall, findings suggest that interpersonal characteristics identified by the PAI scales may be advantageous in approaching treatment within this population.

Keywords: Personality Assessment Inventory; interpersonal characteristics; personality pathology; sexual offending; treatment motivation; treatment prediction.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Dominance-Subordination
  • Humans
  • Interview, Psychological
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Personality Assessment
  • Personality Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Personality Inventory*
  • Sex Offenses / psychology*
  • Young Adult