Overview of MUFON's Experiencer Survey

©Kathleen Marden

***Visit the Mutual UFO Network's Store to purchase Kathleen's and Dr. Don C.Donderi's papers in the MUFON's 2018 International UFO Symposium Proceedings at www.MUFON.com

Abstract: MUFON Experiencer Research Team members, ERT Director Kathleen Marden, and Dr. Don C. Donderi, a retired psychology professor and statistician at McGill University, have completed a multi-year, comprehensive study on individuals who have reported experiencing various types of contact with nonhuman intelligent entities (NHI) of purported extraterrestrial origin. Dr. Donderi administered the American Personality Inventory, a test developed by Ted Davis and the late Budd Hopkins in collaboration with Dr. Donderi, to identify abductees as a separate group who exhibit the symptoms of “UFO Abduction Syndrome.” Their responses are compared and contrasted with the responses from “contactees” who have reported positive interaction with benevolent non-physical entities and highly negative contact phenomena. The differences between the groups are analyzed in an attempt to determine what is occurring. The implications for humanity’s future are derived from the messages communicated by NHI.    


 © Kathleen Marden, Don C. Donderi, PhD., Michael Austin Melton, Ph.D., Craig Lang, M.S., Denise Stoner 

       MUFON’s Experiencer Research Team (ERT) has completed a comprehensive multi-year study on UFO abduction and contact experiencers. It was a two-phase study designed to obtain general statistical data, and to compare two groups of experiencers. The proposal for the study was approved by MUFON’s Board of Directors in 2015, and the survey was posted to MUFON’s website on July 27 of that year. We used Survey Monkey, an online application that is readily available to participants and automatically calculates statistical data. The raw statistics provided a platform for the further analysis of the data. A target number of 500 completed questionnaires was set. In total 516 were analyzed statistically.

     Survey takers were instructed to read and agree to cautionary statements and requirements for participation in an informed consent agreement. The clause advised participants that they might experience increased anxiety due to the nature of the questions. Potential survey takers were advised that the minimum requirement for participation was recall of the nonhuman entities they encountered and the procedures performed in an alien environment. A link to the ERT’s 30 question “Experiencer Questionnaire” was offered for those that did not meet the minimum requirements but wished to speak with a member of the ERT, who offered nonjudgmental listening in a supportive manner.

     ERT members Craig Lang, MS (1956-2018), Michael Austin Melton, PhD (former member), Denise Stoner, and I (Kathleen Marden) developed 118 questions for the “Experiencer Survey.” Our objective was to identify a variety of characteristics that experiencers share and to collect statistical data that would be of value to MUFON investigators, researchers, and experiencers alike. Our questions were straightforward and pertained to the abduction/contact experience, based upon our investigative findings, the historical findings of other investigators, the psychological research findings in a variety of academic studies, and the postulates offered by prominent skeptics. The survey questions pertained to demographics, family structure, generational contact, religious/spiritual beliefs, emotional impact, medical impact, psychic and paranormal phenomena, perceived treatment by NHI (nonhuman intelligence or intelligent) entities, description of NHI, the contact experience, MILABS, and messages from NHI.

    The greatest problem with a survey of this type is the inability to measure the psychological functioning of its participants and the veracity of the statistical data. Given the opportunity for hoaxers (fakers) and delusional people to participate in the study, we developed trick questions to identify and exclude this category of participant. The questions were carefully worded and presented to prevent false positive or false negative responses. All incomplete questionnaires and those identified as completed by fakers were eliminated.

          The study was advertised in the MUFON UFO Journal, on my Facebook page, my website at Kathleen-marden.com, and on some of my radio interviews. MUFON’s ERT encouraged the experiencers they counseled to complete the survey if they met the criteria for participation. We intentionally did not elicit participation from contactees who practiced astral travel, conscious contact with non-physical entities, remote viewing, and shamanic drug induced contact.

          Phase 2 of our study was completed by Dr. Don C. Donderi, a retired psychologist and statistician from McGill University. He administered the “American Personality Inventory” (API) to 188 survey participants that agreed to take part in the next phase of our survey. The API was developed by Ted Davis, a clinical social worker, and Budd Hopkins (1931-2011), a distinguished Abstract Expressionist artist and UFO abduction researcher from New York City, as an indicator of UFO Abduction Syndrome. Davis and Hopkins used the well-known psychological measure the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory, as a model for the API. Dr. Donderi collaborated with them by enlisting the assistance of students at McGill University as the control groups for its evaluation and standardization of the statistical portion of the test. 

     They obtained responses to 608 true/false questions from 52 self-reported abductees and compared their responses to 75 non-abductee controls and 26 simulators who knew the common characteristics that pertain to experiencers of UFO abductions but had not had an experience themselves. A subset of 65 questions were identified for the standardized measure after Dr. Donderi completed his statistical analysis of the three group’s responses.

     We were surprised to find that Dr. Donderi’s API analysis in phase 2 of MUFON’s study did not yield the anticipated results. No one obtained a score close to the simulator or non-abductee targets. Many scored close to the abductee target, but others were distributed along a wide range in reference to the target. I offered the speculation that perhaps modern experiencers have engaged in positive contact and do not exhibit the symptoms of “UFO abduction syndrome.” For this reason, Dr. Donderi and I decided to compare the responses of the 20 highest scorers to the 20 lowest scorers in an effort to identify differences between the two groups. The 20 participants who scored closest to the target were identified as the “abductee group” because they met the criteria for UFO abduction syndrome. The 20 lowest scorers were labeled the “contactee group,” because the majority indicated that their contact was positive. However, five members of this group reported contact of a highly negative nature. Phase 2 survey analytics, where applicable, are interspersed throughout this paper.

     We discovered that the phase 2 “abductee group” shares a unique set of characteristics that are prevalent at a statistically higher rate that is seen in the phase 1 survey takers and the phase 2 “contactee group.” These include generational contact, increased psychic ability, increased paranormal activity, and the condition of being empathic (a psychic sense of the energy, emotions, or physical well-being of other people.) You will become aware of additional statistically significant qualities of this special group as you read this paper. 

***Visit the Mutual UFO Network's Store to purchase Kathleen's and Dr. Donderi's papers in the MUFON's 2018 International UFO Symposium Proceedings at www.MUFON.com.

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