Psychotic experiences as indicators of suicidal ideation in a non-clinical college sample

Jordan E. DeVylder, Elizabeth Thompson, Gloria Reeves, Jason Schiffman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Suicide is a leading cause of preventable death. Epidemiological studies have shown strong associations between sub-threshold psychotic experiences and risk for suicidal ideation and behavior. Screens designed to assess psychotic experiences may have clinical utility in improving suicide prevention efforts. In the current study, we hypothesized that the Prodromal Questionnaire-Brief (PQ-B) would reliably distinguish levels of suicidal ideation within a sample of college students (n=376). As predicted, PQ-B scores varied significantly across levels of suicidal ideation, both when treated as a raw count of sub-threshold psychotic experiences and when taking into account subjective distress associated with those symptoms. In addition, we explored the feasibility of developing a short screen based on the most discriminating items, finding that a six-item version of the PQ-B yielded higher accuracy for detecting elevated suicidal ideation over the full measure. The PQ-B has the potential for clinical utility in detecting groups that might be at increased risk for suicidal ideation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)489-493
Number of pages5
JournalPsychiatry Research
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - Apr 30 2015


  • Prodromal
  • Prodromal questionnaire-brief (PQ-B)
  • Psychosis-risk screening
  • Psychotic experiences
  • Suicidal ideation
  • Suicidality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry


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