Stephen Erdle, J P Rusthon; 2010
In two studies, we explore the neurobiological basis of the General Factor of Personality (GFP) by correlating it with measures of the Behavioral Inhibition System–Behavioral Activation System (BIS–BAS), generalized expectancies of reward and punishment, self-esteem, and positive and negative affect. The GFP was measured by aggregating across the scales of the Big Five Inventory (reverse keying Neuroticism to reflect Emotional Stability). Self-report measures from undergraduate students (Ns = 128, 88) revealed a single GFP dimension with positive loadings on BAS, expectations of reward, self-esteem, and positive affect, and negative loadings on BIS, expectations of punishment, and negative affect. The results were robust, replicating across the studies, the sexes, and after controlling for social desirability. The measures of BIS–BAS, generalized expectancies, self-esteem, and positive and negative affect accounted for 59% and 56% of the variance in the GFP. BIS–BAS may provide a neurobiological basis of the GFP.