Auditory hallucinations : beliefs about voices and perceptions of threat
Objectives: There were two aims of the present study. The first aim was to explore the relationship between participants' belief about the malevolent and benevolent intentions of their hallucinatory voice and the relationship to beliefs about threat. This aim was intended to examine the relationship between two cognitive models of auditory hallucinations presented by Chadwick and Birchwood (1994) and Morrison (1998). These models both implicated beliefs about voices and misinterpretations as a central feature in individuals' responses to their voices. The second aim was to further investigate Morrison's (1998) model, which proposed a relationship between beliefs about threat and the use of safety behaviours.;Design: The study was a correlational design, prompted by the exploratory nature of the study. The following measures were used: 'Beliefs About Voices Questionnaire-Revised' (BAVQ-R; Chadwick, Lees and Birchwood, 2000); Semi-structured safety behaviour interview (Morrison & Nothard, in press) - adapted for the study; an adapted emotional Stroop test and a visual analogue scale were both used to assess for threat.;Results: Strong relationships were found between threat and malevolence and threat and benevolence, which suggested that as ratings of threat increased then malevolence scores increased and benevolence scores decreased. A strong relationship was found between threat and frequency of safety behaviour use, indicating that as threat increased then frequency decreased. Finally, a strong relationship was found between threat and ratings of distress if the safety behaviour could not be used, which suggested that as threat then distress also increased.;Conclusions: The researcher concluded that the two cognitive models had identified related beliefs in malevolence and threat and these relationships were worthy of further exploration, perhaps with a view to integrating the two models. The relationship between threat and safety behaviours was partially supported, but it is recommended that the function of the safety behaviour be explored in relation to threat, to define behaviours which serve to avoid the threat from those that help to challenge the threat.