Inventory of Interpersonal Problems


Authors: Leonard M. Horowitz, Lynn E. Alden, Jerry S. Wiggins, & Aaron L. Pincus

The Inventory of Interpersonal Problems (IIP) is a self-report instrument that identifies a person's most salient interpersonal difficulties. Even if a person begins a clinical interview by describing uncomfortable feelings or distressing thoughts, a large number of interpersonal problems usually surface within the first session. Understanding and resolving interpersonal problems is considered an important step for alleviating common symptoms and syndromes, including depression and anxiety. The IIP has two forms: IIP-64 and IIP-32 (brief version developed for screening purposes).

The IIP enables examinees to describe the kinds of interpersonal problems that have been most salient in their recent experience across diverse interpersonal situations. The items provide representative interpersonal problems that are commonly reported in initial interviews. Summary scores that the test provides help in interviewing the person for prospective positions in the business world. The IIP is also often used in counseling and psychotherapy (group as well as individual treatments), where it is used to help clients and psychotherapists focus on specific difficulties and later assess changes that have occurred since treatment began.

Copyright © 2000 by Leonard M. Horowitz, Lynn E. Alden, Jerry S. Wiggins, & Aaron L. Pincus

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Features of the IIP

Purpose: Identify a person's most salient interpersonal difficulties


IIP-64: 64 items

IIP-32: 32 items

Average completion time: 10-15 minutes

Target population: Ages 18 years and older

Administration: For individual or group adiministration

Norms: The IIP normative sample was based on a national standardization sample of 400 men and 400 women aged 18-89. A stratified sampling plan ensured that the standardization samples included representative proportions of adults according to the selected demographic variables of gender, age, race/ethnicity, and education.

Benefits of the IIP

  • Determines whether an individual is sufficiently distressed to justify treatment for interpersonal problems.
  • Reveals the individual's level of interpersonal difficulties.
  • Pinpoints the particular area of interpersonal problems that the individual finds most distressing.
  • Based upon the circumplex model, which provides a system for conceptualizing and organizing interpersonal difficulties.

Uses of the IIP

  • Individual treatment planning
  • End of treatment evaluation
  • Personality research

Researchers from many different theoretical perspectives have used the IIP to compare success in treating different psychiatric syndromes and different personality disorders. It also enables researchers to compare the efficacy of different forms of treatment. It is frequently used in research in personality and social psychology to compare the interpersonal problems of individuals with different personality characteristics (e.g., different attachment styles) in different types of situations. It also provides a quick graphical profile that clients can easily understand.


Domineering/ Controlling - A high score indicates that the person finds it difficult to relax control over other people. People with high scores have described themselves as too controlling or manipulative.

Vindictive/Self-Centered - A high score indicates problems of hostile dominance. The person readily experiences and expresses anger and irritability, is preoccupied with getting revenge, and fights too much with other people.

Cold/Distant - A high score indicates minimal feelings of affection for and little connection with other people.

Socially Inhibited - A high score indicates feelings of anxiety, timidity, or embarrassment in the presence of other people.

Nonassertive - A high score indicates a severe lack of self-confidence, low self-esteem, and severe reluctance to assert oneself over other people.

Overly Accommodating - A high score indicates excessive readiness to yield in a friendly way to the influence of others.

Self-Sacrificing - A high score indicates a strong tendency to empathize with others in need and nurture them, even when doing so requires the person to sacrifice one's own needs for the sake of those who seem to be in need.

Intrusive/Needy - A high score indicates a need to be both friendly and controlling. People with high scores describe themselves as excessively friendly, outgoing, and sociable to an extreme degree that others experience as excessively intrusive into their affairs.

If you are unable to find the translation you need, you can request permission to make a translation.

Available with IIP License to Reproduce and Remote Online Survey License:
These translations are available free of charge with your purchase of the license. Each PDF file contains the English forms and the translated forms on separate pages. To order, select your language from the Translation drop-down list on the product page. Need multiple translations? Contact us.

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Note: We cannot assure translation quality — many are made by individual researchers and we are not necessarily familiar with the particular language or dialect. Some of the translations are partial and typically do not have validation data. Basically, we offer whatever is available to facilitate your work.

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