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J Pers Soc Psychol. 1997 Aug;73(2):392-404.

The self as a mediator between personality and adjustment.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, Texas A&M University, College Station 77843-4235, USA.


The self can be conceptualized as a mediating agent that translates personality into situated goal-directed activities and adaptation. This research used a level-of-analysis approach to link personality dimensions (Level I) to self-systems (Level II) and to teacher ratings of adjustment in African American, Mexican American, and European American students (N = 317). The authors hypothesized that links among aspects of self-esteem and teacher ratings of adjustment would be domain specific, and those links to dimensions of the 5-factor model would reflects the domain specificity. Structural equation modeling corroborated hypotheses about domain specificity in links between adjustment and 5-factor dimensions. Results were discussed in terms of levels of analysis for personality structure, personality development, and age-related adaptations to social contexts.

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