Normative warrant in diagnostic criteria: The case of DSM-IV-TR personality disorders

John Z. Sadler, Bill Fulford

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


This article focuses on the kinds of evaluative judgments made when applying DSM-IV-TR diagnostic criteria within the diagnostic interview between clinician and patient. The authors name these kinds of value judgments in diagnosis "normative warrant" because they involve one or more justifications (warrants) for standard-bearing (normative) elements involved in applying diagnostic criteria to actual patients. Seven types of normative warrant judgments are described (Type 1, Semantic-Phenomenal Matching; Type 2, Solicitation Choice; Type 3, Sociocultural Context; Type 4, Performance-Context Matching; Type 5, Deviance Threshold; Type 6, Threshold Characterization; Type 7, Disvalue characterization) and the typology is illustrated by applying it to various DSM-IV-TR personality disorder criteria. A research and clinical understanding of normative warrant may well contribute to the refinement of criteria sets as well as the refinement of the clinical use of criteria sets.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)170-180
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Personality Disorders
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2006

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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