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Personality Correlates of Self-Esteem

The current study examined the relation between self-esteem and the Big Five
personality dimensions. Data were collected over the Internet from a large heterogeneous
sample of individuals who ranged in age from 9 to 90 years (N 5 326,641).
Collectively, the Big Five accounted for 34% of the variance in self-esteem. High
self-esteem individuals were emotionally stable, extraverted, and conscientious and
were somewhat agreeable and open to experience. Despite an extensive search for
potential mediators and moderators of this general pattern, the relations between
self-esteem and the Big Five largely cut across age, sex, social class, ethnicity, and
nationality (United States vs non-United States). High self-esteem individuals
tended to ascribe socially desirable traits to themselves, and this tendency partially
mediated relations between the Big Five and self-esteem. Discussion focuses on
interpreting the social desirability effects, limitations of the study, and directions
for future research.
Dr. Kali Trzesniewski,
Nov 6, 2011, 9:08 PM