Corresponding Author Information: Kelsey A. Hobbs

Session Abstract: BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Studies of maladaptive personality tend to focus on the ends of personality trait spectrums associated with the problems well described in psychiatric nosology. However, the personality domains that have been articulated in personality psychology are bipolar, encompassing both adaptive and maladaptive features. The current study set out to explore both the putatively adaptive and maladaptive ends of latent trait domains, seeking to understand how these domains relate to well-being and psychosocial functioning. Rather than assuming a linear relation (where maladaptive outcomes are associated primarily with one end of each domain), we sought to explore the possibility that personality domains are functionally bipolar, with maladaptive outcomes located at both ends of broad domains that encompass both adaptive and maladaptive personality attributes. SUBJECTS: Four samples were utilized in this study. Sample One (n=1062) was drawn from a midwestern university, Sample 2 (n=749) and Sample 3 (n=730) were drawn from a midwestern twin registry, and Sample 4 (n=430) was drawn from a southern university (all U.S. samples). Samples 2 and 3 each contain half of a twin pair and were split into separate samples to account for nonindependence of responses. METHODS AND MATERIALS: Maladaptive personality domains (i.e. disinhibition, detachment, negative affectivity, psychoticism, and antagonism) were measured via the Personality Inventory for the DSM-5 (PID-5; Krueger et al., 2012). The normative end of these domains (i.e. conscientiousness, extraversion, emotional stability, openness, and agreeableness) were measured via the International Personality Items Pool ‚Äì NEO PI-R (IPIP-NEO; Goldberg et al., 2006). The PID-5 inconsistent responding scale (Keeley et al., 2016) and overreporting scale (Sellbom et al., 2018) were used to eliminate potentially invalid responses. Participants also completed the World Health Organization's Quality of Life Short Form (WHOQOL-BREF; Skevington, Lotfy, & O'Connell, 2004), which is a measure of quality of life including the domains of psychological, social, environmental, physical, and overall quality of life. All measures demonstrated adequate internal consistency in the current samples. ANALYSES: All samples were analyzed separately. Data was converted to ordinal measurement by averaging all items from each facet together and then rounding scores to create equal intervals akin to the method used in Suzuki et al. (2015). Item Response Theory (IRT) models were estimated using Samejima‚Äôs Graded Response Models (GRM) for six latent trait domains: 1) Agreeableness vs Antagonism, 2) Disinhibition vs Conscientiousness, 3) Detachment vs Extraversion, 4) Negative affectivity vs Neuroticism, 5) Openness, and 6) Psychoticism. Local regression (LOESS) was then used to regress the quality of life data onto the latent continua. This strategy allows for exploration of the shape of the relation, not assuming a linear relation, but estimating potential non-linear relations empirically. RESULTS: LOESS graphs indicate that when utilizing GRM models, the latent domains in relation to all areas of well-being seems to be relatively linear in nature with the traditionally maladaptive end related to worse functioning overall. However, Samples 3 and 4 show some evidence for curvilinearity in the Disinhibition vs Conscientiousness domain. Additionally, the Openness domain and Psychoticism domain show some variability across samples and quality of life domains. This may be due to the small number of facets in each of those domains. CONCLUSIONS: Traditional IRT approaches seem to demonstrate that the traditionally maladaptive end of the latent trait continua relates to worse quality of life in most domains. Using these same methods, the middle range and “positive” end of these same continua suggest that these domains are related to better quality of life in most domains. Future research should also consider alternative IRT models.


Kelsey A. Hobbs | University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN

Frank D. Mann | Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, NY

Robert D. Latzman | Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA

Johannes Zimmerman | University of Kassel

Robert F. Krueger | University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN

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