Date of Graduation

Summer 2021


Master of Science in Psychology



Committee Chair

W. Paul Deal


This study addresses the influence of mental disorder in the perceptions of guilt in offenses by offenders with DSM-V mental disorders. An attitudes survey and vignettes describing combinations of DSM-V disorders and offenses were distributed to 42 participants at Missouri State University, who were then asked to make guilt judgements and rate the magnitude of guilt of the vignette characters. An ANOVA test revealed no significant difference between conditions with mental disorders versus conditions without mental disorders. A regression analysis found significant relationships between guilt ratings and specific mental disorder conditions. Type of mental disorder was concluded to influence the ratings of guilt in offenses committed by offenders with mental illnesses. Future research should examine more DSM-V mental disorders with forensic samples.


mentally ill offenders, perception of guilt, attitudes, media influence, correspondent inference theory, labeling theory, attribution theory

Subject Categories

Clinical Psychology | Criminology


© Sydney N. Stone

Open Access