The optimization of the forming of ODS tubes is linked to the choice of an appropriated constitutive model for modeling the metal forming process. In the framework of a unified plastic constitutive theory, the strain-controlled cyclic characteristics of a ferritic ODS steel were analyzed and modeled with two different tests. The first test is a classical tension-compression test, and leads to cyclic softening at low to intermediate strain amplitudes. The second test consists in alternated uniaxial compressions along two perpendicular axes, and is selected based on the similarities with the loading path induced by the Fe-14Cr-1W-Ti ODS cladding tube pilgering process. This second test exhibits cyclic hardening at all tested strain amplitudes. Since variable strain amplitudes prevail in pilgering conditions, the parameters of the considered constitutive law were identified based on a loading sequence including strain amplitude changes. A proposed semi automated inverse analysis methodology is shown to efficiently provide optimal sets of parameters for the considered loading sequences. When compared to classical approaches, the model involves a reduced number of parameters, while keeping a good ability to capture stress changes induced by strain amplitude changes. Furthermore, the methodology only requires one test, which is an advantage when the amount of available material is limited. As two distinct sets of parameters were identified for the two considered tests, it is recommended to consider the loading path when modeling cold forming of the ODS steel. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.