Big Five personality traits

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Big Five personality traits
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(File:Wiki-grafik peats-de big five ENG.png|alt=big five personality traits peats|thumb|The big five personality traits){{Psychology sidebar}}The Big Five personality traits, also known as the five-factor model (FFM) and the OCEAN model, is a taxonomy for personality traits. It is based on common language descriptors. When factor analysis (a statistical technique) is applied to personality survey data, some words used to describe aspects of personality are often applied to the same person. For example, someone described as conscientious is more likely to be described as "always prepared" rather than "messy". This theory is based therefore on the association between words but not on neuropsychological experiments. This theory uses descriptors of common language and therefore suggests five broad dimensions commonly used to describe the human personality and psyche.JOURNAL, Goldberg LR, The structure of phenotypic personality traits, The American Psychologist, 48, 1, 26–34, January 1993, 8427480, 10.1037/0003-066x.48.1.26, BOOK, Costa PT, McCrae RR, 1992, Revised NEO Personality Inventory (NEO-PI-R) and NEO Five-Factor Inventory (NEO-FFI) manual., Odessa, FL, Psychological Assessment Resources, The five factors are: The five factors are represented by the acronym OCEAN or CANOE. Beneath each proposed global factor, there are a number of correlated and more specific primary factors. For example, extraversion is said to include such related qualities as gregariousness, assertiveness, excitement seeking, warmth, activity, and positive emotions.BOOK, Personality Traits, Matthews, Gerald, Deary, Ian J., Whiteman, Martha C., vanc, Cambridge University Press, 2003, 978-0-521-83107-9, 2nd,weblink yes,weblink" title="">weblink 2014-12-05, Family life and the way someone was raised will also affect these traits. Twin studies and other research have shown that about half of the variation between individuals results from their genetics and half from their environments. Researchers have found conscientiousness, extraversion, openness to experience, and neuroticism to be relatively stable from childhood through adulthood.{{citation needed|date=December 2018}}


The Big Five personality traits was the model to comprehend the relationship between personality and academic behaviors.JOURNAL, Poropat AE, A meta-analysis of the five-factor model of personality and academic performance, Psychological Bulletin, 135, 2, 322–38, March 2009, 19254083, 10.1037/a0014996, This model was defined by several independent sets of researchers who used factor analysis of verbal descriptors of human behavior.JOURNAL, Digman JM, 1990, Personality structure: Emergence of the five-factor model, Annual Review of Psychology, 41, 417–440, 10.1146/, These researchers began by studying relationships between a large number of verbal descriptors related to personality traits. They reduced the lists of these descriptors (arbitrarily) by 5–10 fold and then used factor analysis to group the remaining traits (using data mostly based upon people's estimations, in self-report questionnaire and peer ratings) in order to find the underlying factors of personality.BOOK, Patrick E., Shrout, Susan T., Fiske, vanc, 1995, Personality research, methods, and theory, Psychology Press, JOURNAL, Allport GW, Odbert HS, 1936, Trait names: A psycholexical study, Psychological Monographs, 47, 211, 10.1037/h0093360, JOURNAL, Bagby RM, Marshall MB, Georgiades S, Dimensional personality traits and the prediction of DSM-IV personality disorder symptom counts in a nonclinical sample, Journal of Personality Disorders, 19, 1, 53–67, February 2005, 15899720, 10.1521/pedi., JOURNAL, Tupes EC, Christal RE, 1961, Recurrent personality factors based on trait ratings., USAF ASD Tech. Rep., 61–97, JOURNAL, Norman WT, Toward an adequate taxonomy of personality attributes: replicated factors structure in peer nomination personality ratings, Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology, 66, 6, 574–83, June 1963, 13938947, 10.1037/h0040291, The initial model was advanced by Ernest Tupes and Raymond Christal in 1961, but failed to reach an academic audience until the 1980s. In 1990, J.M. Digman advanced his five-factor model of personality, which Lewis Goldberg extended to the highest level of organization.JOURNAL, Goldberg LR, The structure of phenotypic personality traits, The American Psychologist, 48, 1, 26–34, January 1993, 8427480, 10.1037/0003-066X.48.1.26, These five overarching domains have been found to contain and subsume most known personality traits and are assumed to represent the basic structure behind all personality traits.JOURNAL, O'Connor BP, A quantitative review of the comprehensiveness of the five-factor model in relation to popular personality inventories, Assessment, 9, 2, 188–203, June 2002, 12066834, 10.1177/1073191102092010,weblink At least four sets of researchers have worked independently within lexical hypothesis in personality theory for decades on this problem and have identified generally the same five factors: Tupes and Christal were first, followed by Goldberg at the Oregon Research Institute,BOOK, Goldberg LR, 1982, From Ace to Zombie: Some explorations in the language of personality, Spielberger CD, Butcher JN, Advances in personality assessment, 1, 201–234, Hillsdale, NJ, Erlbaum, JOURNAL, 10.1037/h0024002, Norman WT, Goldberg LR, 1966, Raters, ratees, and randomness in personality structure, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 4, 6, 681–691, JOURNAL, Peabody D, Goldberg LR, Some determinants of factor structures from personality-trait descriptors, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 57, 3, 552–67, September 1989, 2778639, 10.1037/0022-3514.57.3.552, BOOK, Saucier G, Goldberg LR, 1996, The language of personality: Lexical perspectives on the five-factor model, Wiggins JS, The five-factor model of personality: Theoretical perspectives., New York, Guilford, {{page needed|date=November 2014}}JOURNAL, Digman JM, Five robust trait dimensions: development, stability, and utility, Journal of Personality, 57, 2, 195–214, June 1989, 2671337, 10.1111/j.1467-6494.1989.tb00480.x, Cattell at the University of Illinois,REPORT, Karson S, O'Dell JW, 1976, A guide to the clinical use of the 16PF, Champaign, IL, Institute for Personality & Ability Testing, JOURNAL, Krug SE, Johns EF, 1986, A large scale cross-validation of second-order personality structure defined by the 16PF, Psychological Reports, 59, 2, 683–693, 10.2466/pr0.1986.59.2.683, BOOK, Cattell HE, Mead AD, 2007, The 16 Personality Factor Questionnaire (16PF), Boyle GJ, Matthews G, Saklofske DH, Handbook of personality theory and testing, Volume 2: Personality measurement and assessment., London, Sage, {{page needed|date=November 2014}} and Costa and McCrae.JOURNAL, Costa PT, McCrae RR, Age differences in personality structure: a cluster analytic approach, Journal of Gerontology, 31, 5, 564–70, September 1976, 950450, 10.1093/geronj/31.5.564, BOOK, Costa PT, McCrae RR, 1985, The NEO Personality Inventory manual., Odessa, FL, Psychological Assessment Resources, JOURNAL, McCrae RR, Costa PT, Validation of the five-factor model of personality across instruments and observers, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 52, 1, 81–90, January 1987, 3820081, 10.1037/0022-3514.52.1.81, JOURNAL, McCrae RR, John OP, An introduction to the five-factor model and its applications, Journal of Personality, 60, 2, 175–215, June 1992, 1635039, 10.1111/j.1467-6494.1992.tb00970.x,, These four sets of researchers used somewhat different methods in finding the five traits, and thus each set of five factors has somewhat different names and definitions. However, all have been found to be highly inter-correlated and factor-analytically aligned.WEB, International Personality Item Pool (IPIP),weblink The Society for Judgment and Decision Making, JOURNAL, Goldberg LR, Johnson JA, Eber HW, Hogan R, Ashton MC, Cloninger CR, Gough HG, The international personality item pool and the future of public-domain personality measures, Journal of Research in Personality, February 2006, 40, 1, 84–96, 10.1016/j.jrp.2005.08.007, BOOK, Conn S, Rieke M, 1994, The 16PF Fifth Edition technical manual., Champaign, IL, Institute for Personality & Ability Testing, JOURNAL, Cattell HE, 1996, The original big five: A historical perspective, European Review of Applied Psychology, 46, 5–14, JOURNAL, Grucza RA, Goldberg LR, The comparative validity of 11 modern personality inventories: predictions of behavioral acts, informant reports, and clinical indicators, Journal of Personality Assessment, 89, 2, 167–87, October 2007, 17764394, 10.1080/00223890701468568, Studies indicate that the Big Five traits are not nearly as powerful in predicting and explaining actual behavior as are the more numerous facets or primary traits.JOURNAL, 10.1037/0022-3514.55.4.675, Mershon B, Gorsuch RL, 1988, Number of factors in the personality sphere: does increase in factors increase predictability of real-life criteria?, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 55, 4, 675–680, JOURNAL, 10.1037/0022-3514.81.3.524, Paunonen SV, Ashton MS, 2001, Big Five factors and facets and the prediction of behavior, Journal of Personality & Social Psychology, 81, 3, 524–539, Each of the Big Five personality traits contains two separate, but correlated, aspects reflecting a level of personality below the broad domains but above the many facet scales that are also part of the Big Five.JOURNAL, DeYoung CG, Quilty LC, Peterson JB, Between facets and domains: 10 aspects of the Big Five, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 93, 5, 880–96, November 2007, 17983306, 10.1037/0022-3514.93.5.880, The aspects are labeled as follows: Volatility and Withdrawal for Neuroticism; Enthusiasm and Assertiveness for Extraversion; Intellect and Openness for Openness to Experience; Industriousness and Orderliness for Conscientiousness; and Compassion and Politeness for Agreeableness.People who do not exhibit a clear predisposition to a single factor in each dimension above are considered adaptable, moderate and reasonable, yet they can also be perceived as unprincipled, inscrutable and calculating.JOURNAL, Toegel G, Barsoux JL, 2012, How to become a better leader,weblink MIT Sloan Management Review, 53, 3, 51–60, Depending on how much of each trait a person has, it could make someone more susceptible to participating in certain activities.{{citation needed|date=December 2018}}

Descriptions of the particular personality traits

Openness to experience

Openness is a general appreciation for art, emotion, adventure, unusual ideas, imagination, curiosity, and variety of experience. People who are open to experience are intellectually curious, open to emotion, sensitive to beauty and willing to try new things. They tend to be, when compared to closed people, more creative and more aware of their feelings. They are also more likely to hold unconventional beliefs. High openness can be perceived as unpredictability or lack of focus, and more likely to engage in risky behaviour or drug taking.BOOK,weblink Psy-Q: You know your IQ - now test your psychological intelligence, Ambridge, Ben, 31 July 2014, Profile, 9781782830238, 11, vanc, Google Books, Moreover, individuals with high openness are said to pursue self-actualization specifically by seeking out intense, euphoric experiences. Conversely, those with low openness seek to gain fulfillment through perseverance and are characterized as pragmatic and data-driven—sometimes even perceived to be dogmatic and closed-minded. Some disagreement remains about how to interpret and contextualize the openness factor.{{Clarify|date=December 2017}}

Sample items

  • I have excellent ideas.
  • I am quick to understand things.
  • I use difficult words.
  • I am full of ideas.
  • I am not interested in abstractions. (reversed)
  • I do not have a good imagination. (reversed)
  • I have difficulty understanding abstract ideas. (reversed)WEB,weblink IPIP Home,


Conscientiousness is a tendency to display self-discipline, act dutifully, and strive for achievement against measures or outside expectations. It is related to the way in which people control, regulate, and direct their impulses. High conscientiousness is often perceived as being stubborn and focused. Low conscientiousness is associated with flexibility and spontaneity, but can also appear as sloppiness and lack of reliability. High scores on conscientiousness indicate a preference for planned rather than spontaneous behavior.BOOK, Costa PT, McCrae RR, 1992, Neo PI-R professional manual., Odessa, FL, Psychological Assessment Resources, The average level of conscientiousness rises among young adults and then declines among older adults.WEB, Research Reports on Science from Michigan State University Provide New Insights,weblink Science Letter, Gale Student Resource in Context, 4 April 2012,

Sample items

  • I am always prepared.
  • I pay attention to details.
  • I get chores done right away.
  • I like order.
  • I follow a schedule.
  • I am exacting in my work.
  • I leave my belongings around. (reversed)
  • I make a mess of things. (reversed)
  • I often forget to put things back in their proper place. (reversed)
  • I shirk my duties. (reversed)


Extraversion is characterized by breadth of activities (as opposed to depth), surgency from external activity/situations, and energy creation from external means.BOOK, Marti Olsen, Laney, vanc, The Introvert Advantage, 2002, Thomas Allen & Son Limited, Canada, 28, 35, 978-0-7611-2369-9, The trait is marked by pronounced engagement with the external world. Extraverts enjoy interacting with people, and are often perceived as full of energy. They tend to be enthusiastic, action-oriented individuals. They possess high group visibility, like to talk, and assert themselves.WEB, An Examination of the Impact of Selected Personality Traits on the Innovative Behaviour of Entrepreneurs in Nigeria,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink yes, 11 November 2013, cscanada, Canadian Research & Development Center of Sciences and Cultures, 14 November 2012, Extroverted people may appear more dominant in social settings, as opposed to introverted people in this setting.BOOK, Personality: Classic Theories and Modern Research, Friedman, Howard, Schustack, Miriam, 2016, Pearson Education Inc, 978-0-205-99793-0, Sixth, vanc, Introverts have lower social engagement and energy levels than extraverts. They tend to seem quiet, low-key, deliberate, and less involved in the social world. Their lack of social involvement should not be interpreted as shyness or depression; instead they are more independent of their social world than extraverts. Introverts need less stimulation, and more time alone than extraverts. This does not mean that they are unfriendly or antisocial; rather, they are reserved in social situations.JOURNAL, Rothmann S, Coetzer EP, The big five personality dimensions and job performance, SA Journal of Industrial Psychology, 24 October 2003, 29, 10.4102/sajip.v29i1.88, Generally, people are a combination of extraversion and introversion, with personality psychologist Eysenck suggesting that these traits are connected somehow to our central nervous system.{{rp|106}}

Sample items

  • I am the life of the party.
  • I don't mind being the center of attention.
  • I feel comfortable around people.
  • I start conversations.
  • I talk to a lot of different people at parties.
  • I don't talk a lot. (reversed)
  • I think a lot before I speak or act. (reversed)
  • I don't like to draw attention to myself. (reversed)
  • I am quiet around strangers. (reversed)
  • I have no intention of talking in large crowds. (reversed)


The agreeableness trait reflects individual differences in general concern for social harmony. Agreeable individuals value getting along with others. They are generally considerate, kind, generous, trusting and trustworthy, helpful, and willing to compromise their interests with others. Agreeable people also have an optimistic view of human nature.Disagreeable individuals place self-interest above getting along with others. They are generally unconcerned with others' well-being, and are less likely to extend themselves for other people. Sometimes their skepticism about others' motives causes them to be suspicious, unfriendly, and uncooperative.WEB, "Daisy, daisy, give me your answer do!" switching off a robot, 217–222,weblink Bartneck C, Van der Hoek M, Mubin O, Al Mahmud A, Dept. of Ind. Design, Eindhoven Univ. of Technol., Eindhoven, Netherlands, 6 February 2013, March 2007, Low agreeableness personalities are often competitive or challenging people, which can be seen as argumentative or untrustworthy.Because agreeableness is a social trait, research has shown that one's agreeableness positively correlates with the quality of relationships with one's team members. Agreeableness also positively predicts transformational leadership skills. In a study conducted among 169 participants in leadership positions in a variety of professions, individuals were asked to take a personality test and have two evaluations completed by directly supervised subordinates. Leaders with high levels of agreeableness were more likely to be considered transformational rather than transactional. Although the relationship was not strong, (r=0.32, β=0.28, p

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