Individual Differences and Personality, 2nd Edition

Individual Differences and Personality, 2nd Edition,Michael Ashton,ISBN9780124160095


Academic Press




235 X 191

New edition of textbook focuses on current research and theory on the nature of personality and related individual differences.

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Key Features

  • Presents a scientific approach to personality and related individual differences, as well as theory and research on the fundamental questions about human psychological variation
  • New edition presents findings from dozens of new research studies of the past six years
  • Includes new chapter on vocational interests and a revised chapter on personality disorders reflecting DSM-5 formulation
  • Contains streamlined descriptions of measurement concepts and heritability research
  • Includes various boxes containing interesting asides that help to maintain the student’s attention.


How do we come to be who we are? Why do we differ in our personalities? How do these differences matter in life? Individual Differences and Personality aims to describe how and why personality varies among people. Unlike books that focus on individual theorists, this book focuses on current research and theory on the nature of personality and related individual differences. The book begins by discussing how personality is measured, the concept of a personality trait, and the basic dimensions of personality. This leads to a discussion of the origins of personality, with descriptions of its developmental course, its biological causes, its genetic and environmental influences, and its evolutionary function. The concept of a personality disorder is then described, followed by a discussion of the influence of personality on life outcomes in relationships, work, and health. Finally, the book examines the important differences between individuals in the realms of mental abilities, of beliefs and attitudes, and of behavior.


Undergraduate and graduate level courses in personality.

Michael Ashton

Michael C. Ashton is a professor of psychology at Brock University in St. Catharines, Ontario. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Western Ontario in 1998. As a grad student in the late 1990s, together with Kibeom Lee, he did some cross-cultural research to find out whether the “Big Five” personality dimensions found in North America could be recovered in other cultures. Using their own work and that of other researchers, they found that there were actually six personality dimensions. The “new” one was the H factor, or the Honesty-Humility Factor, was discovered and is now considered one of the six dimensions of human personality. In addition to the second edition of the textbook, Individual Differences and Personality, he is the author of numerous articles in scientific journals, and co-authored with Kibeom Lee The H Factor of Personality.

Affiliations and Expertise

Brock University, Ontario, Canada

Individual Differences and Personality, 2nd Edition




Chapter 1: Basic Concepts in Psychological Measurement

Chapter 2: Personality Traits and the Inventories that Measure Them

Chapter 3: Personality Structure: Classifying Traits

Chapter 4: Developmental Change and Stability of Personality

Chapter 5: Biological Bases of Personality

Chapter 6: Genetic and Environmental Influences on Personality

Chapter 7: The Evolutionary Function of Personality

Chapter 8: Personality Disorders

Chapter 9: Personality and Life Outcomes

Chapter 10: Mental Ability

Chapter 11: Vocational Interest

Chapter 12: Religion and Politics

Chapter 13: Sexuality




Quotes and reviews

"Ashton presents this text on personality development, assessment, and pathology… A wide variety of measurement instruments and theoretical frameworks are presented, often accompanied by illustrative diagrams or placed in supplementary text-boxes."--Reference & Research Book News, October 2013

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