The factor structure of social cognition in schizophrenia: Weak evidence for separable domains

Anja Vaskinn, Kjetil Sundet, Ingrid Melle, Ole A. Andreassen, Svein Friis

Short communication
Schizophrenia Research: Cognition, 2021
Online / DOI:

This study examined the factor structure of social cognition in a Norwegian sample of individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia (n = 83). Eight variables from three social cognitive tests from three theoretical domains were included: emotion processing, social perception and theory of mind. Factor analysis with maximum likelihood extraction and oblique rotation resulted in two factors using Kaiser’s criterion. Although the two-factor model had better fit than a unifactorial model, it did not represent the data well. Two social cognitive variables did not load on either factor. The two extracted factors did not correspond to an expected distinction between low and high level of processing or between affective and cognitive processes. A non-negligible number of nonredundant residuals between observed and computed correlations suggested poor model fit. In conclusion, this study failed to identify separable dimensions of social cognition in spite of including measures from different theoretical domains.