Desire for control, sense of control and obsessive-compulsive checking: An extension to clinical samples

Richard Moulding, Guy Doron, Michael Kyrios, Maja Nedeljkovic

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32 Citations (Scopus)


Research in non-clinical samples has suggested that control beliefs, specifically desire for control and sense of control, may play a role in Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. The present study extends a previous research design to clinical participants [Moulding, R., Kyrios, M., & Doron, G. (2007). Obsessive-compulsive behaviours in specific situations: The relative influence of appraisals of control, responsibility and threat. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 45, 1693–1702]. In this study, clinical participants with OCD-checking symptoms (n = 16), anxiety disorders (n = 17) and community controls (n = 27) were presented with four hypothetical scenarios. Using a manipulation paradigm, the relationship between control appraisals and other OCD-relevant constructs (threat, responsibility) was examined. As in the non-clinical study, desire for control was moderately affected by responsibility and threat manipulations, while sense of control was not affected by these manipulations. Individuals with OCD recorded higher desire for control and lower sense of control relative to community controls, and a higher desire for control than the anxiety group, suggesting some specificity to OCD. A possible interactive model of control, threat and responsibility is discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1472-1479
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Anxiety Disorders
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2008


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