Factor Structure, Measurement Equivalence, and Criterion Relations of the Inventory of Personality Organization (IPO) in Two Nonclinical Samples

Open Access
Ellison, William D
Graduate Program:
Master of Science
Document Type:
Master Thesis
Date of Defense:
April 01, 2009
Committee Members:
  • Kenneth Levy, Thesis Advisor
  • assessment
  • borderline personality disorder
Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) represents a serious public health risk. Individuals with BPD consume a disproportionately high amount of mental health services, engage in frequent suicidal and parasuicidal behavior, and do not respond as well to established treatments for other disorders. Research into BPD depends on the availability of well-validated and useful measures of its core features. However, few such instruments exist. The present report examines the psychometric performance of the Inventory of Personality Organization (IPO), a theory-based self-report measure of borderline personality features consisting of 46 items. The IPO was administered to a total of 2775 college undergraduates from two separate universities in the northeastern U.S. A confirmatory factor analysis suggested that the IPO is better characterized by a three-factor than a two-factor model, which is consistent with its theoretical structure. A formal test of measurement equivalence suggested that the IPO generalizes well to different populations. The relationship between IPO subscales and measures of identity, defense mechanisms, affect, and reckless and self-harming behavior was also examined. Results indicated that the identity diffusion subscale of the IPO displayed good convergent and discriminant validity.