Robins+et+al.++2001

The interrelations among the big five personality

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Unformatted text preview: research on the Big Five (Costa & McCrae, 1997; Roberts & DelVecchio, 2000). Individual differences in Agreeableness and Neuroticism were the least consistent in rank ordering, whereas individual differences in Openness to Experience were the most consistent. The interrelations among the Big Five personality dimensions remained highly stable over the 4-year period, reflecting a high level of 632 Robins et al. structural stability. Thus, although college is a time of considerable identity construction and reformation, it does not seem to entail a dramatic change in the structure of personality traits. In terms of ipsative stability, the individual Big Five profiles showed moderate levels of stability. Almost half the sample showed change in their trait profile over the 4-year period, based on the D2 and D′2 indices. This is not surprising given that most people exhibited some degree of reliable change on at least one of the Big Five dimensions. However, analyses of the D″2 index showed that much of the change was due to shifts in the overall level and spread of the profiles rather than in their shape. The literature on personality change is almost completely devoid of research on the stability of trait profiles, and the present study thus helps to fill a gap in the literature. However, the psychological meaning of individual differences in ipsative stability remains to be explored. Limitations and Future Directions The present study has a number of limitations that suggest the need for further research. Most notably, the design did not allow us to distinguish personality change due to maturational factors (ontogenic change) and change due to the college experience (sociogenic change). Thus, we do not know whether the findings generalize to all individuals transitioning from late adolescence to early adulthood or just those who attend college. Consider, for example, normative increases in Conscientiousness and Openness. In some sense, the college context provides an environmental press for increases in these two traits. Successful academic performance in college requires perseverance, punctuality, responsibility, an...
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This note was uploaded on 12/02/2010 for the course PSYCH PSY BEH P2 taught by Professor Susanturkcharles during the Fall '10 term at UC Irvine.

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