Inmate thinking patterns: An empirical investigation

Jon T. Mandracchia, Robert D. Morgan, Sheila Garos, J. Travis Garland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations


This study investigated patterns of maladaptive thinking in 435 offenders and sought to develop and preliminarily validate a measure of criminal thinking patterns. An exploratory factor analysis of 77 thinking errors derived from four theories of cognitive distortions that influence behavior yielded a three-factor model of dysfunctional thinking among offenders. Interpretations of these three factors were provided (i.e., Control, Cognitive Immaturity, and Egocentrism). Implications for treatment and future research with offenders, using the conceptualization of erroneous thinking posited by the three-factor model, are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1029-1043
Number of pages15
JournalCriminal Justice and Behavior
Issue number8
StatePublished - Aug 2007


  • Cognitive distortions
  • Criminal attitudes
  • Criminal thinking
  • Dysfunctional thinking
  • Inmate thinking


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