This multi-method research linked the Big Five personality dimensions to aggression in early adolescence. Agreeableness was the personality dimension of focus because this dimension is associated with motives to maintain positive interpersonal relations. In two studies, middle school children were assessed on the Big Five domains of personality. Study 1 showed that agreeableness was associated with both indirect and direct aggression. In addition, the link between agreeableness and aggression was strongest for direct strategies. Study 2 examined the hypotheses that agreeableness predicts social cognitions associated with aggression, peer reports of direct aggression, and teacher reports of adjustment. Agreeableness predicted peer reports of aggression and social cognitions associated with aggression. In addition, aggression mediated the link between agreeableness and adjustment. Results suggest that of the Big Five dimensions, Agreeableness is most closely associated with processes and outcomes related to aggression in adolescents.
- Social behavior
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Developmental and Educational Psychology
- Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)