Submitted by: Jimmie Jo Fitzwater
From Chapter 6 Attachment and Personality
Personality traits are defined by our textbook as “the tendency to behave, think, and feel in certain consistent ways” (Bergin & Bergin, 2012). Researchers have been working for decades to come up with some sort of consensus regarding personality dimensions. What they discovered is now known as “The Big 5.” The Big 5 are “five broad clusters of traits used to model and evaluate people’s personalities: Openness (sometimes referred to as “Intellect”), Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness, and Neuroticism” (Fournier, 2008). The Big 5 personality traits “do not represent a particular theoretical perspective but were derived from analyses of the natural-language terms people use to describe themselves and others” (John and Srivastava, 1999). Each of the 5 personality traits “describes, relative to other people the intensity of a person’s feelings, thoughts, or behaviors. Everyone possesses these traits to a greater or lesser degree” (psychometric-success, 2013).
The Big 5 Personality Traits can be described as follows (and can be remembered using the word OCEAN):
Openness: Open people are imaginative, adventurous, emotional, and artistic. They tend to be intellectual. They have broad interests. People in this category are often open minded and love to debate. They do not mind challenging authority or tradition.
Conscientiousness: People who fall in this category have high levels of self-discipline. Conscientious people believe they have the self-control to achieve success. They tend to be cautious, orderly, reliable, and responsible.
Extraversion: Extraverts are friendly, assertive, and have high activity levels. They are cheerful and enjoy the company of others. People who score high in this category make friends easily and then form close relationships. Extraverts lead a busy life and are often involved in many activities.
Agreeableness: Agreeable people are cooperative, modest, and moral. They believe that most people are fair and trustworthy. They do not like confrontations. They are willing to compromise to in order to get along with others. People with this trait are highly sympathetic and compassionate.
Neuroticism: People who fall in this category tend to be anxious and angry. They are sensitive and often feel as though they are being treated unfairly. They are easily embarrassed and feel that others make fun of them. Neurotic people often feel depressed. Neurotic people have a hard time resisting impulses and urges. They often feel helpless when they are under pressure. (psychometric-success, 2013)
Bergin, C.C. & Bergin, D.A. (2012). Child and Adolescent Development in Your Classroom. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth/Cengage Learning.
Fournier, Gillian (2008). The Big Five Personality Traits. Psychcentral.com. Retrieved on September 21, 2013 from http://psychcentral.com/encyclopedia/2008/big-five-personality-traits/.
John, Oliver P. and Srivastava, Sanjay (1999). The Big Five Taxonomy: History, Measurement, and Theoretical Perspectives. Retrieved on September 21, 2013 from http://pages.uoregon.edu/sanjay/pubs/bigfive.pdf.
The Big 5 Aspects of Personality (2013). Psychometric-success.com. Retrieved on September 21, 2013 from http://www.psychometric-success.com/personality-tests/personality-tests-big-5-aspects.htm.
1) What implications do personality traits have for teachers in the classroom?
2) How can the Big 5 personality traits be used to motivate students in the classroom?
3) What traits do you fall into? How does this affect your teaching style?
4) How can the knowledge of the Big 5 personality traits help you to better reach and build relationships with your students?