Luis F. García, Fernando Gutiérrez, Oscar García, Anton Aluja

The Alternative Model of Personality Disorders: Assessment, Convergent and Discriminant Validity, and a Look to the Future

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Clinical Psychology
  • General Medicine

The Alternative Model of Personality Disorders (AMPD) is a dimensional, empirically based diagnostic system developed to overcome the serious limitations of traditional categories. We review the mounting evidence on its convergent and discriminant validity, with an incursion into the less-studied ICD-11 system. In the literature, the AMPD's Pathological Trait Model (Criterion B) shows excellent convergence with normal personality traits, and it could be useful as an organizing framework for mental disorders. In contrast, Personality Functioning (Criterion A) cannot be distinguished from personality traits, lacks both discriminant and incremental validity, and has a shaky theoretical background. We offer some suggestions with a view to the future. These include removing Criterion A, using the real-life consequences of traits as indicators of severity, delving into the dynamic mechanisms underlying traits, and furthering the integration of currently disengaged psychological paradigms that can shape a sounder clinical science. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Clinical Psychology, Volume 20 is May 2024. Please see for revised estimates.

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