Measuring disordered personality functioning

To love and to work reprised

G. Parker*, D. Hadzi-Pavlovic, L. Both, S. Kumar, K. Wilhelm, A. Olley

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

64 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: Current limitations to diagnosing and measuring the personality disorders encouraged a set of studies seeking to provide an alternate approach to modeling and measuring disordered personality function. Method: A large set of self-reported descriptors of disordered personality function were factor analyzed in a sample of patients with clinician-diagnosed personality dysfunction, generating 11 lower-order and two higher-order constructs. Subjects and non-clinical controls also completed a measure of personality styles underpinning formalized personality disorder groupings. Properties of the refined self-report (SR) measure were assessed in an independent sample of patients with a clinically diagnosed personality disorder. Results: Limitations in 'cooperativeness' and 'coping' formed the higher-order constructs defining disordered personality function, with these constructs relevant to all personality styles. Analyses of SR, corroborative witness (CW) and clinician-rated data in an independent sample supported measuring disordered personality function by our derived 20-item SR measure, and exposed limitations to clinician-based assessment. Conclusion: Study findings build to a multi-axial strategy for measuring personality disorder, involving separate dimensional assessment of both disordered personality function and of personality style.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)230-239
Number of pages10
JournalActa Psychiatrica Scandinavica
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2004
Externally publishedYes


  • Disordered functioning
  • Personality
  • Personality disorder

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