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Thread: More on the "Big Five" Five-Factor Model of Personality

  1. Top | #21
    Administrator lpetrich's Avatar
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    A Stunning Study of 1.5 Million People Reveals There Are Only 4 Personality Types (And Most People Are the Same Type) | Inc.com
    A robust data-driven approach identifies four personality types across four large data sets | Nature Human Behaviour

    Though the Big Five dimensions are generally accepted, the notion of personality types isn't. A simplistic approach is to split the dimensions and use permutations of their being low and high as personality types. Hippocrates's four-humor theory is a good example, with each type being either high or low of Extroversion and Neuroticism. The 16 MBTI types are another example, from subdividing the MBTI's four dimensions.

    But the real world does not work like that. Personality-test scores have a LOT of scatter. But this team of researchers have found four concentrations of personality features, sort of like lumps in batter.
    Average Reserved Self-Centered Role Model
    Openness --- --- --- +++
    Conscientiousness --- +++
    Extroversion +++ +++ +++
    Agreeableness --- +++
    Neuroticism +++ --- ---
    +++ high, --- low, (blank) in the middle
    I'm like Role Model except for being very introverted.

  2. Top | #22
    Mazzie Daius fromderinside's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by J842P View Post

    That's not the Big Five, you are thinking of the Myer's Briggs, which is not really taken seriously in the personality psych community, but laypeople people seem to eat it up, and it is sold to hiring managers as a way of screening candidates. I think it is more similar to astrology and horoscopes than serious science, although that may be harsh. It's basically a failed model that got really popular among non-psychologists and business people.

    The Big Five on the other hand, is taken seriously. Although, it is somewhat controversial (or rather, some people simply don't find it appealing), because it is an empirically derived model, essentially the result of factor analysis on personality survey data. In terms of explanatory value, it is probably the most robust model in personality psych, which is often criticized for its lack of rigor.
    Empirical? Factor Analysis? Multiple correlation as empirical? Where did you learn about science J842P? In a personality class?

    When you can show me a survey choice is actually related to physical conditions like, say psychophysical determination of sensory limen, then let's talk. And that is a relatively feeble case. I'd actually prefer evidence of descending moderation in first receptor in sensorium. Until then ....

    You are right in questioning personality research and theory as science at any level including medical. We haven't even got stuff like approach withdraw, seek avoid, paradigms down to science yet.*

    *T. C. Schneirla brought that up in the fifties and journals are still accepting articles about approach avoid phenomena.
    Last edited by fromderinside; 08-09-2019 at 06:58 PM.

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    I have found four "Big Five" online personality tests. I have taken all of them:

    The Big Five Project - Personality Test
    O = 91 . C = 96 . E = 3 . A = 34 . N = 13 . (0 to 100)

    Free Big Five Personality Test - Accurate scores of your personality traits
    O = 92 . C = 77 . E = 19 . A = 56 . N = 23 . (0 to 100)

    Big Five Personality Test
    O = 96 . C = 87 . E = 37 . A = 14 . N = 2 . (0 to 100)

    Free open-source BigFive personality traits test - translated to multiple languages
    O = 101 . C = 108 . E = 64 . A = 101 . N = 52 . (0 to 120)

    That last one has subtraits, six per trait:
    • Neuroticism: Anxiety, Anger, Depression, Self-Consciousness, Immoderation, Vulnerability
    • Extraversion: Friendliness, Gregariousness, Assertiveness, Activity Level, Excitement-Seeking, Cheerfulness
    • Openness: Imagination, Artistic interests, Emotionality, Adventurousness, Intellect, Liberalism
    • Agreeableness: Trust, Morality, Altruism, Cooperation, Modesty, Sympathy
    • Conscientiousness: Self-Efficacy, Orderliness, Dutifulness, Achievement-Striving, Self-Discipline, Cautiousness


    My composing this post ought to be independent evidence that I am high in Conscientiousness.

  4. Top | #24
    Administrator lpetrich's Avatar
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    I'll assemble the three subtrait systems here, and added the one from Revised NEO Personality Inventory
    • Stability
      • Conscientiousness
        • Industriousness, Orderliness
        • Organization, Productiveness, Responsibility
        • Competence, Order, Dutifulness, Achievement Striving, Self-Discipline, Deliberation
        • Self-Efficacy, Orderliness, Dutifulness, Achievement Striving, Self-Discipline, Cautiousness
      • Agreeableness
        • Compassion, Politeness
        • Compassion, Respectfulness, Trust
        • Trust, Straightforwardness, Altruism, Compliance, Modesty, Tender-Mindedness
        • Trust, Morality, Altruism, Cooperation, Modesty, Sympathy
      • Neuroticism
        • Volatility, Withdrawal
        • Anxiety, Depression, Emotional Volatility
        • Anxiety, Hostility, Depression, Self-Consciousness, Impulsiveness, Vulnerability
        • Anxiety, Anger, Depression, Self-Consciousness, Immoderation, Vulnerability
    • Plasticity
      • Openness
        • Intellect, Esthetic Openness
        • Intellectual Curiosity, Aesthetic Sensitivity, Creative Imagination
        • Fantasy, Aesthetics, Feelings, Actions, Ideas, Values
        • Imagination, Artistic interests, Emotionality, Adventurousness, Intellect, Liberalism
      • Extroversion
        • Enthusiasm, Assertiveness
        • Sociability, Assertiveness, Energy Level
        • Warmth, Gregariousness, Assertiveness, Activity, Excitement Seeking, Positive Emotions
        • Friendliness, Gregariousness, Assertiveness, Activity Level, Excitement Seeking, Cheerfulness


    I've found the book "Personality, Character, and Leadership In The White House: Psychologists Assess the Presidents" by Steven J. Rubenzer and Thomas R. Faschingbauer, and it uses the same subtrait / facet names as does a previous post here, but with "Angry Hostility" instead of "Hostility".

    For the most part, in each pair of lists of six subtraits, each one in one list is another name for one in another list.


    The Big Five model has been criticized as incomplete, and the Wikipedia article on the Big Five lists some proposed additional personality dimensions: "religiosity, manipulativeness/machiavellianism, honesty, sexiness/seductiveness, thriftiness, conservativeness, masculinity/femininity, snobbishness/egotism, sense of humour, and risk-taking/thrill-seeking." The HEXACO model has an additional dimension: Honesty/Humility.

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    Mazzie Daius fromderinside's Avatar
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    Wet dreams and the misuse of statistics made obvious. Why not leave the data itself reveal structure? Factor analysis

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    Administrator lpetrich's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fromderinside View Post
    Wet dreams and the misuse of statistics made obvious. Why not leave the data itself reveal structure? Factor analysis
    That is what was done. Big Five personality traits:
    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".
    Nonhuman species:
    Personality Dimensions in Nonhuman Animals: A Cross-Species Review - Samuel D. Gosling, Oliver P. John, 1999 - the journal paper itself.

    Bilateria: E, N
    • Protostomia - Octopus
    • Deuterostomia - Osteichthyes (bony fish)
      • Actinopterygii (ray-finned fish) - Guppy
      • Sarcopterygii (lobe-finned fish) - Boreoeutheria (has A)

    E - Extroversion - Boldness
    N - Neuroticism - Sensitivity to Threat
    A - Agreeabieness - Sociability

    Now for going back further:
    Cnidarian chemical neurotransmission, an updated overview - ScienceDirect
    Convergent evolution of neural systems in ctenophores

    The highest-level phylogeny of Metazoa, the animal kingdom, is still unclear, and a cautious phylogeny is
    • Porifera (sea sponges)
    • Placozoa (Trichoplax - a little blob)
    • Ctenophora (comb jellies)
    • Cnidaria (sea anemones, jellyfish, etc.) + Bilateria (anything bilaterially symmetric)

    Cnidaria + Bilateria share several neurotransmitters, including catecholamines (dopamine-like ones) and serotonin.

    But what might be a good personality test for a jellyfish? I'm guessing rate it on boldness (extroversion) and sensitivity to threat (neuroticism).

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    Mazzie Daius fromderinside's Avatar
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    Right the misapplication of names to factors is justified by statistical technique. The names may have nothing to do with factors but a given population might yield results near those associated with a particular data set. A Factor Analysis is not an empirical tool it is is as associative tool.

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    Administrator lpetrich's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fromderinside View Post
    Right the misapplication of names to factors is justified by statistical technique. The names may have nothing to do with factors but a given population might yield results near those associated with a particular data set. A Factor Analysis is not an empirical tool it is is as associative tool.
    I don't know what you mean by that.

    If one does a principal components analysis, then it's straightforward to interpret the axes - look at what variables are most strongly represented in each one of them.

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    An Introduction to the Five‐Factor Model and Its Applications - McCrae - 1992 - Journal of Personality - Wiley Online Library

    Gives how the Big Five were discovered.

    The first path to it was from lexical analysis - analzying vocabulary - what we have words for. The second path to it was with personality quizzes.
    Theories of personality have been remarkably diverse, and it might have been anticipated that the questionnaire scales designed to operationalize them would show little resemblance to each other. In fact, however, there is considerable redundancy in what they measure. In particular, many scales measure the chronic negative emotions that are of such great concern to psychiatrists and clinical psychologists, and many others deal with the interpersonal activity so important for social psychologists.
    In 1964, HJ Eysenck constructed a theory of personality from these two dimensions: neuroticism and extraversion - N and E.

    This theory went back to antiquity, though it treated N and E as binary.

    In 1974, two pairs of psychologists proposed another dimension of personality. Tellegren and Atkinson proposed "Openness to Absorbing
    and Self-Altering Experience" or Absorption, and Costa and McCrae proposed "Openness to Experience". This is Openness - O.

    In 1980, Costa and McRae proposed self-control and in 1982 Tellegren constraint. These are forms of Conscientiousness - C.

    The remaining dimension is Agreeableness - A.

    A big problem in the research is the large number of personality tests that different researchers have devised. A good test of them would mean having several subjects take several of these tests -- one will have to recruit a large number of subjects who will agree to be very busy taking different tests.

    Lexical research is much easier - subjects could rate themselves or others with them and one could look for correlations in the subjects' ratings.

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    In addition to the empirical evidence for the model, there is something intuitively appealing about the factors: They make a great deal of sense. In part, this may be because they make explicit the implicit personality theory that is encoded in the personality language we all use; in part, the model probably squares well with our experience of self and others.
    I find the Big Five *much* more intuitive than the MBTI, and that's why I seem like such a big Big Five enthusiast.

    As to why the Big Five weren't discovered sooner, authors McCrae and John speculate about such causes as clinical psychologists mainly being interested in N from their concern with psychological dysfunction. Also the difficulty of factor analysis in the early days of computers. Also low-quality research: "litter-ature".

    Another problem is measuring features that are mixtures of the Big Five dimensions. Shyness: +N -E, hostile and temperamental: +N -A.

    The Big Five is not a comprehensive theory, but a good overall one. Each of the five traits in it includes several subtraits.

    Any additional factors? Possible but unlikely. Culture? Values? Masculinity / Femininity? Positive Evaluation? Negative Evaluation? Some research does indeed find additional ones, but it is hard to replicate that research. So there is no consistent evidence of more factors.

    Does cognitive ability also count? It can be treated as a separate dimension, g, though there is a correlation between g and O.

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