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J Nerv Ment Dis. 2009 Jan;197(1):50-5. doi: 10.1097/NMD.0b013e3181923ca1.

Validity of DSM-IV axis V global assessment of relational functioning scale: a multimethod assessment.

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  • 1Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Psychology Assessment Center, 1 Bowdoin Square, 7th Floor, Boston, Massachusetts 02114-2919, USA.


We investigate the convergent validity of the DSM-IV Axis V Global Assessment of Relational Functioning Scale (GARF; American Psychiatric Association, 1994). This study included 79 patients at a university-based outpatient treatment clinic. We examined clinician-rated GARF and the relationship to self-reported (Inventory of Interpersonal Problems; IIP-C; Horowitz et al. 2000) and free response themes [Social Cognition and Object Relations Scale: SCORS; Hilsenroth, Stein & Pinsker, 2004; Westen, 1995] of interpersonal functioning. Clinician ratings of the GARF scale and SCORS variables were highly reliable and internally consistent. Convergent Validity among the GARF, SCORS, and IIP scores was calculated using a Principal Components Analysis and Confirmatory Factor Analysis (CFA). Results of the Principal Components Analysis revealed that the GARF, SCORS, and IIP scores converged on a single factor, although findings of the CFA did not fully confirm the 1 factor model originally proposed. Intercorrelations among the GARF, SCORS, and IIP variables were analyzed and a pattern of significant relationships was found between the GARF and SCORS variables. This study helps support the convergent validity GARF as a relational functioning measure and is one of the first investigations to examine this scale multidimensionally.

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