Misconstruing methods and meaning in the General Factor of Personality

Andrew Comensoli, Carolyn MacCann
Published Online:
25 Jun 2012
Volume/Issue No:
Volume 48 Issue 4

Additional Options

Research has suggested that a General Factor of Personality (GFP) might represent a real and meaningful higher‐order factor in the personality hierarchy. However, there are psychometric shortcomings in many of the studies used to support this argument, as well as convincing empirical evidence for alternative explanations of the GFP as methodological rather than meaningful. The current article re‐examines the research supporting a substantive GFP by considering and evaluating the evidence presented in a recent volume (Just, 2011). It is concluded that covariation among first‐order personality factors is more likely a statistical or methodological artefact than a theoretically meaningful higher‐order construct.

© International Union of Psychological Science