University of Twente Student Theses


Self-Criticism and Self-Compassion: Two sides of the same coin?

Rips, J.M. (2016) Self-Criticism and Self-Compassion: Two sides of the same coin?

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Abstract:This study aims at answering the question, whether self-compassion and self-criticism could be two opposite ends of a same construct. Therefore, the current study used two questionnaires that are widely used to assess self-criticism and self-compassion in research. These are the Forms of Self-Criticizing /-Attacking and Self-Reassuring Scale (FSCRS) and the Self-Compassion Scale – Short Form (SCS-SF). Three research questions were used that regarded the scales concurrent, construct and incremental validity to compare self-compassion and self-criticism. The data from 348 participants was used in this study. To assess the concurrent validity, correlation coefficients were calculated between the two scales and the subscales. For the assessment of the construct validity, correlations were calculated between the scales and demographic characteristics of the participants, the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) and the Mental Health Continuum – Short Form (MHC-SF). Regression analyses were conducted to examine the incremental validity of both scales. Results show mixed results. When assessing the scales in total, they seem to measure a very similar construct. When analyzing the subscales, results indicate that there must be significant differences in the underlying constructs. This study supports the assumption that self-criticism and self-compassion might be two opposite ends of one construct. Differences between the subscales might be caused by different operational definitions. However, this finding needs to be further investigated in order to find clear definitions of self-compassion and self-criticism to give a final answer on the question. Both questionnaires should not be used to assess self-criticism along with self-compassion until more research has been conducted.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology
Programme:Psychology MSc (66604)
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