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Universal features of personality traits from the observer's perspective: Data from 50 cultures


McCrae, RR and Terracciano, A and Shakespeare-Finch, JE, Universal features of personality traits from the observer's perspective: Data from 50 cultures, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 88, (3) pp. 547-561. ISSN 0022-3514 (2005) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1037/0022-3514.88.3.547


To test hypotheses about the universality of personality traits, college students in 50 cultures identified an adult or college-aged man or woman whom they knew well and rated the 11,985 targets using the 3rd-person version of the Revised NEO Personality Inventory. Factor analyses within cultures showed that the normative American self-report structure was clearly replicated in most cultures and was recognizable in all. Sex differences replicated earlier self-report results, with the most pronounced differences in Western cultures. Cross-sectional age differences for 3 factors followed the pattern identified in self-reports, with moderate rates of change during college age and slower changes after age 40. With a few exceptions, these data support the hypothesis that features of personality traits are common to all human groups.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Psychology
Research Group:Social and personality psychology
Research Field:Personality and individual differences
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in human society
UTAS Author:Shakespeare-Finch, JE (Dr Jane Shakespeare-Finch)
ID Code:34128
Year Published:2005
Web of Science® Times Cited:694
Deposited By:Psychology
Deposited On:2006-03-08
Last Modified:2006-03-08

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