Personality measures in the national social life, health, and aging project

TitlePersonality measures in the national social life, health, and aging project
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsIveniuk, J, Laumann, EO, Waite, LJ, McClintock, MK, Tiedt, AD
JournalThe journals of gerontology. Series B, Psychological sciences and social sciences
IssueSuppl 2
KeywordsHealth Conditions and Status, Methodology

OBJECTIVES: Provide recommendations for researchers on the use of the Big Five personality battery in the National Social Life, Health, and Aging Project (NSHAP), and ensure that the battery does proxy the Big Five. Also, describe the levels of Big Five traits across gender and age. METHOD: We used an Exploratory Structural Equation Model (ESEM) to analyze NHSAP's personality battery, comparing NSHAP with the National Longitudinal Study of Midlife in the United States (MIDUS) and the Health and Retirement Study (HRS). RESULTS: ESEM revealed a 5-factor structure in the NSHAP battery, but with considerable cross-loadings. When these cross-loadings were not included in the model, model fit notably worsened. Reliabilities of Big Five scales were comparable to the HRS and MIDUS, even though NSHAP's battery is shorter. Women were considerably more Agreeable than men, although this gender gap closed among the oldest in the sample (80 years or older). DISCUSSION: Researchers will be able to make use of NSHAP's personality battery to examine a range of social, biological, and psychological factors at older ages, in light of individuals' general traits. We recommend models which allow for cross-loadings.


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Endnote Keywords

Big Five/Factor analysis/NSHAP/Personality traits

Endnote ID


Citation Key8122