The Five-Factor Model of Personality as a Framework for Personality-Health Research

Published In: Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, v. 67, no. 2, Aug. 1994, p. 278-286

Posted on RAND.org on January 01, 1994

by Grant N. Marshall, Camille B. Wortman, Ross R. Vickers, Jeffrey W. Kusulas, Linda K. Hervig

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Examines the Neo-Five Factor Personality Inventory and representative personality scales as administered to two samples of male military recruits (N = 798). Factor analysis revealed three conceptually meaningful domains: optimistic control (including indices of hope, optimism, self-esteem, internal control, and the absence of anxiety), anger expression (anger and control), and inhibition (anger inhibition and introspectiveness). Examination of these domains (and their constituent scales) led to three general findings: (1) few health-psychology dimensions or instruments correspond to only one broad domain of personality; (2) most personality measures drawn from health psychology could be predicted using a scheme that includes personality domains of neuroticism, extroversion, openness, conscientiousness, and agreeableness; and (3) health-personality research has focused disproportionally on the domains of neuroticism and extroversion and, to a lesser extent, agreeableness, as opposed to openness and conscientiousness. These findings have implications for understanding the psychology of health behavior.

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