Dimensions of interpersonal behavior: A convergent validation within a cognitive interactionist framework

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Abstract

In the sphere of interpersonal behavior, R. F. Bales and others have taken the position that the analysis of interpersonal situations best proceeds by way of the dimensions of dominance-submissiveness, friendliness-hostility, and taskorientedness-expressivity. This study offers a convergent validation of those dimensions. On the basis of descriptions of the conceptual content of the Bales dimensions and of the scales of the Jackson Personality Research Form (PRF), predictions were made as to convergence based on the degree of conceptual overlap. Fifty-five members of 4 small groups rated their peers on the three Bales dimensions and also completed the self-report Jackson PRF. As predicted, peer ratings of dominance-submissiveness correlated with dominance and exhibitionism (p < .001), friendliness-hostility with affiliation, nurturance (p < .001) and aggression, and taskorientedness-expressivity with play. The findings represent a substantial convergent validation of the Balesian dimensions. Implications of the dimensional approach for emerging cognitive interactionist models of personality are discussed.

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