Measuring Dissociation: Exploring the Dissociative Experiment Scale (DES) - Essay Sample

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  4
Wordcount:  983 Words
Date:  2023-03-16


Dissociative Experiment Scale, also referred to as DES, is used in the measurement of various variety of dissociation. It includes average dissociative experiments such as a daydreaming and problematic dissociative experiment. It is a tool used in the screening of dissociative disorders that provides for Dissociative Disorder and the Not Otherwise Specified Multiple Personality Disorder (Cole et al., 2016). Posttraumatic Stress Disorder also highly scores in the scale. Dissociative Experiment Scale is used for self-assessment on determining if a complete dissociative disorder clinical interview might be needed (Patihis & Lynn, 2016). The scale has been translated into different languages, with the authors of the range granting permission for the extent to be used in clinical research. A score of 30% or more on the scale indicates a high level of dissociation, while a score below 30% indicates low degrees of separation. Successful treatment is shown upon the reduction of the DES score when the current is compared with the results acquired at the beginning of the procedure.

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Construct and Assessment

The scale was developed to be the most used in self-assessment in measuring dissociation disorder clinical study. Several studies have indicated that the overall DES score suggests very high levels of inter-rater reliability, temporal stability, and internal consistency. Other studies showed that the total rating of DES discriminates dissociative psychopathology patients from other patients with different types of disorders. In the recent past, various investigators have embarked on an examination of the DES psychometric structure by using a factor analytic method (Schimmenti, 2016). The empirical research towards normal dissociative can be used in the hypnosis filed. For example, the Tellegen Absorption Scale consists of 37items, which requires a person to respond true or false for each question. The items determine the overall tendency of a person to becoming absorbed towards external stimuli, causing an increase in focal attention while the peripheral awareness is majorly diminished.

Standardization and Validity

The Confirmatory factor analysis supports the DES structure factors. It applies to both nonclinical and clinical samples, being used to both groups. Results acquired from factor analysis overlapped those obtained from expert classification procedures. Assessment results indicate that DES is a valid instrument that clinicians can use in assessing the different frequency of dissociative experiments, such as compartmentalization and detachment. The Dissociative Experiment Scale comprises of 28 items that help to evaluate the severity and frequency of a vast range of dissociative experiment involving an eleven-point analog scale. The DES shows high convergent validity. Results have indicated that DES is a potent tool that can be used to assess the different frequency of dissociative experiments that can be used by clinicians. An example of various activities includes compartmentalization and detachment in nonclinical and clinical settings, pathological and nonpathological dissociation. DES can be used to provide additional information to clinicians on important treatment indicators.


Reliability is used to determine if the construct is dependable or consistent. It is basically to determine if the same scale is used to measure the exact construct different times, does it give the same results consistently? (Patihis & Lynn, 2016). To provide an example to illustrate unreliability is when people guess your weight. Reliability is therefore used to imply consistency slightly the accuracy. Sixteen diffident studies have indicated the mean security of DES as 0.93. Hence, indicating the high reliability of the scale. The authenticity can also be acquired from the scales factor structure of the excising 28 DES-items. Although previous studies had only indicated three factors being depersonalization, amnesia, and absorption (Cole et al., 2016). Later on, different studies have suggested that only one element can be derived from the items. Studies have identified that the DES skewness of its distribution can spuriously lead to three factors being acquired from one DES scale dimension.

Cultural Impacts and Ethical Standards

Understanding dissociation in terms of cultural and social context gives the idea to the social mechanism and underlying cognitive challenging the concept of separation as a source of psychopathology evidence. DES is implied to be a product of the neurological paradigm. The anthropological model suggests that dissociation as a social and primarily rhetorical phenomenon. Separation creates a social space giving people the chance to perform and articulate different ways of self-experience in a cultural context (Schimmenti, 2016). The two paradigms do not overlap. Most DES approaches focus on discursive functions without considering biological mechanisms and emotional context. Different models of dissociation indicate the different products of various processes that determine the attention and the related information to the discursive practices and social role performance that are related to self.


The dissociative Experiment Scale is used in determining various varieties of dissociation. It is used in the screening of different dissociative disorders, including Dissociative Disorder and the Not Otherwise Specified and Multiple Personality Disorder. The DES scale is useful in self-assessment to determine if a complete clinical interview is required. The extent quickly determines the level of dissociation by referring to the level of percentage in the scope. A score of above 30% indicates high degrees of separation, while a level below 30% indicates a low level of separation. Assessment results indicate that DES is a valid instrument that clinicians can use in assessing the different frequency of dissociative experience, including compartmentalization and detachment. The Dissociative Experiment Scale comprises 28 items that are useful in determining the severity and frequency of a vast range of dissociative experiments that involve an eleven-point analog scale. The DES scale shows high convergent validity; hence, results are indicating the extent to be a reliable source that clinicians can use.


Cole, C. L., Newman-Taylor, K., & Kennedy, F. (2016). Dissociation mediates the relationship between childhood maltreatment and subclinical psychosis. Journal of Trauma & Dissociation, 17(5), 577-592.

Patihis, L., & Lynn, S. J. (2017). Psychometric comparison of Dissociative Experiences Scales II and C: A weak traumadissociation link. Applied Cognitive Psychology, 31(4), 392-403

Schimmenti, A. (2016). Dissociative experiences and dissociative minds: Exploring a nomological network of dissociative functioning. Journal of Trauma & Dissociation, 17(3), 338-361.

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Measuring Dissociation: Exploring the Dissociative Experiment Scale (DES) - Essay Sample. (2023, Mar 16). Retrieved from

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