The Key Ingredients of Personality Traits: Situations, Behaviors, and Explanations
Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 2014, Vol 40(1) 79–91
Posted: 4 Dec 2016
Date Written: 2014
The trait and social cognitive perspectives are considered disparate approaches to understanding personality. We suggest an integrative view in which three elements derived from the social cognitive perspective (i.e., situations, behaviors, and explanations [SBEs]) form the basis of personality traits. Study 1 demonstrated strong associations between traits and SBEs across the Big Five dimensions. Studies 2 through 7 tested the discriminative validity, internal structure, and unique contributions of the individual components of SBEs. Studies 8 and 9 demonstrated that the strong associations between traits and SBEs generalize to different cultures. The present work suggests that SBEs may be a universal folk psychological mechanism underlying personality traits.
Keywords: personality, traits, social cognitive theories, person perception, culture
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