ASWB Reasoning Practice: Antisocial Personality Disorder

By Heidi Tobe on May 3, 2021


We're back this month with more on Antisocial Personality Disorder. As discussed in our April blog, every other month we are covering a topic and comparing how that topic could show up on the exam in a recall vs. reasoning question. In February and March we covered Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Last month, we did a recall question on Antisocial Personality Disorder. So this month, we're taking that same topic (Antisocial Personality Disorder) and giving you a reasoning question to practice with.

What do I need to know about Antisocial Personality Disorder?

The biggest thing to keep in mind with Antisocial Personality Disorder, is that it is characterized by disregard for and violation of the rights of others. People with Antisocial Personality Disorder are unremorseful of harmful and lawbreaking behaviors and do not care how it impacts the safety or well being of others. With an Antisocial Personality Disorder Diagnosis, you will observe behaviors such as law-breaking, aggression, lying, and deceit for personal gain or pleasure.

ASWB Practice Question:

A social worker receives a court ordered referral for a 45-year-old man who presents with a history of law-breaking behavior and disregard for the safety of others in his life both personally and professionally. During the assessment, the client expresses an ongoing lack of understanding and remorse for how his actions impact others. What should the social worker assess for FIRST?

A. Autism Spectrum Disorder

B. A history of trauma

C. A personality disorder


(scroll for answer and rationale)














The correct answer is C: to assess for a personality disorder. Nothing indicates the presence of Autism Spectrum Disorder (A) or ADHD (D). While (B) is a tempting answer option, the information given in the question stem does not specifically point to a history of trauma, but does point directly to the presence of a personality disorder (Antisocial Personality Disorder, specifically). Had the question been phrased differently, we may have chosen B. If instead of simply asking what we should assess for FIRST, it instead asked ‘from a trauma informed perspective, what should the social worker assess for FIRST?’ then we could choose to assess for B first. Since it doesn’t say that, though, all of the presenting symptoms point directly toward the presence of a personality disorder.

ASWB Masters and Clinical Exam Preparation

How did you do with this month’s and last month’s questions on Antisocial Personality Disorder? Did you find the reasoning question more challenging than last month’s recall question? With over 85% of the ASWB clinical exam comprised of reasoning based scenarios, you want to ensure you’re ready to tackle this unique category of questions. Know that TDC’s LMSW and LCSW exam prep programs have hundreds of reasoning based practice questions and rationales to prepare you for your exam. One of the great things about TDC is that every customer also has access to a coach you can email anytime with questions that come up as you’re studying. With a 95% success rate and thousands of real customer testimonials, TDC has helped THOUSANDS of social workers pass their LMSW and LCSW exams. We’re ready to help you PASS with CONFIDENCE this year!


Commenter Name
May 5, 2021


In regards to this months Antisocial Personality practice question. If the question was rephrased and stated the client is 17y/o, would this be Conduct Disorder instead?

Thank you
Stacey Smith

Commenter Name
May 5, 2021

Yes, if that was an answer option.

Add new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.

Plain Filter