A Cross-Cultural Study of Relationships Between Daily Social Interaction and the Five-Factor Model of Personality


  • Preparation of this article was supported in part by a faculty research grant from the College of William & Mary to John B. Nezlek. We are grateful to Ina Sellin for her help collecting the data in the German sample.

concerning this article should be addressed to John B. Nezlek, College of William & Mary, Department of Psychology, PO Box 8795, Williamsburg, VA 23187-8795. Email: jbnezl@wm.edu.


ABSTRACT Two studies, one in the United States (N=130) and another in Germany (N=100), examined relationships between daily social interaction and the traits of the Five-Factor Model. In both studies, student participants described their social interactions for 2 weeks using the Rochester Interaction Record. In both countries, Agreeableness and Conscientiousness were positively related to reactions to social interaction, whereas Neuroticism was unrelated to reactions to interactions. In the United States, Extraversion and Openness were positively related to reactions to interactions, whereas these factors were not related to reactions to interactions in Germany. In the United States, Extraversion was positively related to how socially active participants were, whereas none of the FFM traits was related to amount of social interaction in the German sample. In both countries, Extraversion was positively related to percent of interactions involving friends. The results highlight the importance of taking into account the sociocultural milieus within which personality unfolds.