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The effects of self-monitoring and self-reported consistency on the consistency of personality judgments made by strangers and intimates

Journal of Research in Personality
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/0092-6566(81)90016-7


Abstract How consistent are strangers' and intimates' judgments of stimulus people's personalities, and how is this interjudge consistency affected by stimulus persons' assessed self-monitoring and self-reported behavioral consistency? To answer these questions, 38 stimulus subjects rated themselves on the personality dimensions of extraversion and anxiety and also rated their cross-situational consistency on these dimensions. Strangers, friends, mothers, and fathers of stimulus persons also rated them on extraversion and anxiety. The results indicated that: For judgments of anxiety there was lower interjudge consistency for high than for low self-monitoring stimulus subjects. For judgments of extraversion there was no difference in interjudge consistency for low and high self-monitoring stimulus subjects. The results also showed that anxiety was a more “private” trait in that intimates' but not strangers' judgments correlated with stimulus subjects' self-reported anxiety ( r = .50 and r = .11, respectively), while extraversion was a more “public” trait in that both intimates' and strangers' judgments correlated with stimulus subjects' self-reported extraversion ( r = .42 and r = .51, respectively). These results suggest that self-monitoring of stimulus persons affects interjudge consistency of peroonality judgments particularly for “private” traits such as anxiety, which are most subject to expressive control and inhibition.

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