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Two of a Kind or Distant Relatives? A Multimethod Investigation of the Overlap Between Personality Traits and Character Strengths


Ruch, Willibald; Vylobkova, Valentina; Heintz, Sonja (2023). Two of a Kind or Distant Relatives? A Multimethod Investigation of the Overlap Between Personality Traits and Character Strengths. Journal of Individual Differences, 44(4):263-270.

Abstract

Allport’s distinction of personality devaluated (personality) and personality evaluated (character) raised the question of whether the character is redundant with personality, which still remains open today. The present study hence compares the Five-Factor Model of personality and the VIA-classification (Values in Action) of character strengths across two methods (self- and peer-reports) and two levels of abstraction (domains/factors and scales/facets). A sample of 152 participants and 152 peer-raters completed the NEO-Personality Inventory-Revised and the VIA Inventory of Strengths (VIA-IS). Personality and character assessed with these inventories were found to strongly overlap, yet the different operationalizations were rarely redundant (except for three personality facets). Multitrait-multimethod analyses mostly supported the convergent and discriminant validity of personality and character. Interpersonal strengths (e.g., teamwork) and abstract character factors lacked discriminant validity to personality facets. The present investigation contributes to a better understanding of the interplay between personality and character and provides an impetus for future research on the “virtue gap” between devaluated and evaluated personality traits.

Abstract

Allport’s distinction of personality devaluated (personality) and personality evaluated (character) raised the question of whether the character is redundant with personality, which still remains open today. The present study hence compares the Five-Factor Model of personality and the VIA-classification (Values in Action) of character strengths across two methods (self- and peer-reports) and two levels of abstraction (domains/factors and scales/facets). A sample of 152 participants and 152 peer-raters completed the NEO-Personality Inventory-Revised and the VIA Inventory of Strengths (VIA-IS). Personality and character assessed with these inventories were found to strongly overlap, yet the different operationalizations were rarely redundant (except for three personality facets). Multitrait-multimethod analyses mostly supported the convergent and discriminant validity of personality and character. Interpersonal strengths (e.g., teamwork) and abstract character factors lacked discriminant validity to personality facets. The present investigation contributes to a better understanding of the interplay between personality and character and provides an impetus for future research on the “virtue gap” between devaluated and evaluated personality traits.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Scopus Subject Areas:Social Sciences & Humanities > General Psychology
Life Sciences > Biological Psychiatry
Uncontrolled Keywords:Positive Psychology, Personality Psychology, Big Five, Character strengths,
Language:English
Date:1 October 2023
Deposited On:28 Jun 2023 15:42
Last Modified:29 Jun 2024 01:36
Publisher:Hogrefe & Huber
ISSN:1614-0001
OA Status:Green
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1027/1614-0001/a000400
Official URL:https://econtent.hogrefe.com/doi/abs/10.1027/1614-0001/a000400?journalCode=jid
  • Content: Accepted Version
  • Language: English
  • Licence: Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)