The multidimensional structure of perfectionism in clinically distressed and college student samples

Psychol Assess. 2002 Sep;14(3):365-73.


Confirmatory factor analysis was used to evaluate 2 multidimensional measures of perfectionism (R. O. Frost, P. Marten, C. Lahart, & R. Rosenblate, 1990; P. L. Hewitt & G. L. Flett, 1991). On a first-order level, support was found for Hewitt and Flett's (1991) original 3-factor conceptualization of perfectionism, although only for an empirically derived 15-item subset. Support was also obtained for 5 of the 6 dimensions proposed by R. O. Frost et al. (1990), but the model only displayed good fit when a refined scale containing 22 of the original 35 items was used. A second-order analysis found evidence for 2 higher-order factors of adaptive and maladaptive perfectionism. Perfectionism dimensions correlated in expected directions with personality domains, symptom distress, and academic achievement. The brief measures of perfectionism also retained the construct-related validity displayed by the full-item versions.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Defense Mechanisms*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Internal-External Control*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Mood Disorders / diagnosis
  • Mood Disorders / psychology*
  • Motivation*
  • Personality Inventory / statistics & numerical data*
  • Psychometrics
  • Reference Values
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Students / psychology