The Personality Assessment Inventory (PAI) is a self-report personality test that provides objective information about clinical features suggested by a client’s responses to items in the inventory. It also describes probable qualities related to self-concept, interpersonal style as expressed in relationships and social interactions, treatment issues that may arise, and possible medically oriented (DSM) diagnoses. Because the PAI was normed on adults in a variety of clinical and community settings, profiles can be compared with both normal and clinical populations.


The Differential Diagnostic Technique (DDT) is a performance-based personality test that provides understanding about patterns of responding that typically operate outside cognitive awareness. Objectively scored, this visual-motor personality test measures the balancing of different emotional aspects of the personality and provides indices that help in psychologically understanding an individual’s level of emotional health and differential control over impulses, e.g., active strivings, passive-dependency needs, and interpersonal expression. Scores are also provided that suggest: (a) how much emotional energy corresponding to each defined area of the personality is available for processing associated emotions and (b) how an individual copes when environmental support is not available.


For best assessment results, under the supervision of our clinical psychologist who scores and interprets these personality tests, therapist and client can compare and contrast what the self-report test suggests a person is aware of in themselves in comparison to what is demonstrated by way of the performance-based test. Clients typically find the testing and discussion of findings interesting and thought-provoking, leading to a more focused understanding of themselves.


If you have any questions about these assessment instruments, your therapist can discuss how these two types of personality tests are used together at The Clarity Clinic to provide information relevant for clinical diagnosis, treatment planning, and screening for critical issues that need to be addressed.