Personality in middle childhood: A hierarchical structure and longitudinal connections with personality in late adolescence

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Abstract

Research on the structure of personality in middle childhood, while advancing, is still in the early stages of development. In this study, we employed a group of 1563 twins to elucidate the hierarchical structure of personality in middle childhood and provide connections to established personality traits in adult populations. Our results provide evidence for a higher-order structure of personality in middle childhood that maps on to recent findings in adult populations supporting hierarchical relationships among 2-, 3-, 4-, and 5-factor models of personality. In addition, primary higher-order personality traits rated by parents at age 11 showed substantial predictive validity for analogous traits rated by self at age 17. We discuss our results within the context of developing a convergent hierarchical taxonomy of personality in middle childhood and the importance of multi-informant investigations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1456-1462
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Research in Personality
Volume42
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2008

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported in part by US Public Health Service Grants #AA09367 and DA 05147. This article is adapted from a dissertation by the first author submitted to the Department of Psychology, University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. We would like to thank the twins and their families and the recruiting, interviewing, data management, and lab staffs of the Minnesota Twin Family Study.

Copyright:
Copyright 2008 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • 5-Factor model
  • Childhood personality
  • Personality development
  • Personality structure

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