Peer Sociometric Status and Personality Development from Middle Childhood to Preadolescence

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Sociometric status, the regard that other group members confer to an individual, is one of the most ubiq-uitous and behaviourally relevant attributes assigned to the person by the social environment. Despite this, its contri-bution to personality development has received little attention. The present three-wave longitudinal study, spanningthe age range 7–13 years (n = 1222), sought tofill this gap by examining the transactional pathways between peersociometric status (measured by peer nominations) and Five-Factor personality traits (measured by self-ratingsand parent and teacher ratings). Sociometric status prospectively predicted the development of extraversion. By con-trast, agreeableness and neuroticism prospectively predicted the development of sociometric status. Furthermore,individual-level stability in extraversion was associated with individual-level stability in sociometric status. The re-sults were robust across different sources of personality ratings. We argue that peer sociometric status in the schoolclassroom is the type of environmental effect that has potential to explain personality development. Because of its sta-bility, broadness, and possible impact across a variety of personality processes, sociometric status can both repeti-tiously and simultaneously influence the network of multiple inter-correlated micro-level personality processes,potentially leading to a new network equilibrium that manifests in changes at the level of the broad personality trait.
TidskriftEuropean Journal of Personality
Sidor (från-till)606-626
Antal sidor21
StatusPublicerad - sep 2019
MoE-publikationstypA1 Tidskriftsartikel-refererad


  • 515 Psykologi

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