The The Discovery and Evolution of the Big Five of Personality Traits: A Historical Review
Keywords:Big Five, personality traits, personality psychology, trait theory, five-factor model, human behavior
The Big Five construct of personality traits is a taxonomy of five higher-order personality traits that are believed to be responsible for people's differences and is considered the world's most researched and used personality construct to date. The paper proposes that the construct's robustness and universal appeal were gained not by accident but by design. The Big Five does not only have a long historical foundation behind it, but more importantly, the construct's robustness is a product of the use of various research methods and advanced quantitative techniques and analyses (e.g., statistical tools, factor analysis, etc.) by generations of researchers across history, as well as by numerous cross-cultural research streams that add to its perceived universality. The construct's openness to incorporate findings from allied sciences such as neuroscience and genetics also contribute to its robustness and continuing evolution as a construct that may help advance our understanding of human personality and behavior.
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