An Overview of the DSM-5 Alternative Model of Personality Disorders

Psychopathology. 2020;53(3-4):126-132. doi: 10.1159/000508538. Epub 2020 Jul 9.


Authoritative classification systems for psychopathology such as the DSM and ICD are shifting toward more dimensional approaches in the field of personality disorders (PDs). In this paper, we provide a brief overview of the dimensionally oriented DSM-5 alternative model of PDs (AMPD). Since its publication in 2013, the AMPD has inspired a substantial number of studies, underlining its generative influence on the field. Generally speaking, this literature illustrates both the reliability and validity of the constructs delineated in the AMPD. The literature also illustrates empirical challenges to the conceptual clarity of the AMPD, such as evidence of substantial correlations between indices of personality functioning (criterion A in the AMPD) and maladaptive personality traits (criterion B in the AMPD). Key future directions pertain to linking the AMPD literature with applied efforts to improve the lives of persons who suffer from PDs, and surmounting challenges germane to the evolution of the DSM itself.

Keywords: Alternative model of personality disorders; Classification systems; DSM; Psychopathology.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders*
  • Humans
  • Personality Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Psychopathology / methods*
  • Reproducibility of Results