Ethnicity, education, and the temporal stability of personality traits in the East Baltimore Epidemiologic Catchment Area study

Corinna E. Löckenhoff, Antonio Terracciano, Oscar J Bienvenu, Nicholas S. Patriciu, Gerald Nestadt, Robert R. McCrae, William W Eaton, Paul Costa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


We examined the influence of age, gender, Black vs. White ethnicity, and education on five indices of personality stability and change across an average interval of 8 years in the East Baltimore Epidemiologic Catchment Area study. In the full sample (n = 505, aged 30-88), examination of structural, rank-order, ipsative, and mean level stability, as well as indices of reliable change suggested that NEO-PI-R personality traits showed moderate to high levels of stability over time. There were few age and gender effects on temporal stability but rank-order, ipsative, and mean level stability were lower among Blacks and individuals with lower education. Future research should explore additional demographic predictors of temporal plasticity in a diverse range of samples, and employ observer ratings to assess personality.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)577-598
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Research in Personality
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2008



  • Age
  • Demographics
  • Education
  • Epidemiologic Catchment Area
  • Ethnicity
  • Five-Factor Model
  • Personality
  • Temporal stability indices

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology

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