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Behav Genet. 2009 Jan;39(1):36-47. doi: 10.1007/s10519-008-9244-x. Epub 2008 Nov 29.

Genetic and environmental influences on the junior temperament and character inventory in a preadolescent twin sample.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, SGM 501, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA 90089-1061, USA.


This study evaluated the genetic and environmental structure of personality variables from the Junior Temperament and Character Inventory (JTCI), in 605 pairs of 9- and 10-year old twins. There is a paucity of information on the biometric structure of temperament and character traits in preadolescent children. Latent factor models were fit to the subscales/items of each trait as a method of estimating genetic and environmental effects on true score variance, especially since internal consistency and reliability were moderate or low for some scales (particularly Reward Dependence and Persistence). Shared environmental influences on Cooperativeness were substantial. Significant heritability estimates were obtained for Self-directedness and Harm Avoidance, but not Novelty Seeking, Reward Dependence or Persistence. With the exception of Harm Avoidance, each of the scales failed to show measurement invariance with respect to sex, suggesting these scales may differ in meaning for boys and girls at this age.

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