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J Pers Soc Psychol. 1995 Oct;69(4):673-85.

Traits and metatraits: their reliability, stability, and shared genetic influence.

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1
Department of Psychology, Pennsylvania State University, USA.

Abstract

Metatraits measure individual differences in construct relevancy, whereas traits measure individual differences in construct extremity. Twenty-four traits and metatraits were examined in this study using 157 pairs of identical twins reared together, 95 pairs of identical twins reared apart, 211 pairs of fraternal twins reared together, and 228 pairs of fraternal twins reared apart obtained from the Swedish Adoption/Twin Study of Aging (see N. L. Pedersen et al., 1991). Reliability and stability analyses of the metatraits revealed generally lower reliability and stability across time compared to traits. Quantitative genetic analyses of the relationship between traits and metatraits indicated that approximately 69% of the metatrait's genetic variance is shared with the trait, with 31% of its genetic variance unique to the metatrait. These results suggest that metatraits provide a useful additional view of personality.

PMID:
7473025
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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