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Measurement of Unwanted Thought Suppression Strategies with the Thought Control Questionnaire in the General Polish Population: A Confirmatory Factor Analysis and Validation

Authors Szczepanowski R, Cichoń E, Niemiec T, Andrzejewska BE, Wójta-Kempa M

Received 12 October 2020

Accepted for publication 23 December 2020

Published 12 February 2021 Volume 2021:14 Pages 137—148


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Igor Elman

Remigiusz Szczepanowski,1,2 Ewelina Cichoń,2,3 Tomasz Niemiec,2,3 Beata E Andrzejewska,2,3 Monika Wójta-Kempa1

1Department of Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, Wroclaw Medical University, Wroclaw, Poland; 2Department of Psychology, Faculty of Applied Studies, Research Unit for Clinical Psychology, University of Lower Silesia, Wroclaw, Poland; 3Faculty of Psychology, WSB University in Torun, Torun, Poland

Correspondence: Remigiusz Szczepanowski
Department of Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, Wroclaw Medical University, Wroclaw ul. Kazimierza Bartla 5, Wroclaw, 51-618, Poland
Tel + 48 71 784 18 15
Fax +48 71 347 93 59

Introduction: Although psychological studies have suggested both the desired and paradoxical effects of unwanted thought suppression, we still know little about this mechanism. It has been proposed that individual differences in using specific strategies to suppress intrusions explain why contradictory effects of suppression are observed. The main aims of the study were to investigate the factor structure of the Polish version of Thought Control Questionnaire (TCQ) and verify whether this structure corresponds to the original version of the TCQ measurement.
Methods: Using the TCQ, which is a 30-item self-report measure, this research investigated individual thought control strategies to suppress intrusive thoughts in the general population. We used parallel analysis and theoretical interpretability to investigate the most appropriate factor structure of the inventory. To examine the validity of the Polish version of TCQ the correlational analysis of TCQ factors with other psychometric scales: Beck Depression Inventory, The State-Trait Anxiety Inventory and The Metacognitions Questionnaire. The internal consistency of the TCQ subscales was also assessed by calculating the Cronbach’s alpha reliability coefficients for each factor.
Results: The resulting five-factor solution explained 51.86% of the total variance. The Polish version of TCQ consisted of five subscales yielding satisfactory reliability values: 1) Punishment (α = 0.725); 2) Distraction (α = 0.688); 3) Social Control (α = 0.780); 4) Worry (α = 0.788; 5) Re-appraisal (α = 0.70).
Conclusion: The five-factor solution was convergent with the dimensions that appeared in the original TCQ version and were observed in the most TCQ adaptations in various countries. Our findings support the psychological construct of thought-control strategies measured by TCQ and prove the satisfactory reliability of this self-report measure within a Polish population.

Keywords: thought control strategies, suppression, intrusions

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