Domenico Calarco, Donatella Ferrante, Lisa Di Blas

Personality consistency from a social-cognitive perspective: An empirical study on intraindividual variability in self-efficacy in social situations

  • Abstract

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Keywords: personality, intraindividual variability, Knowledge and Appraisal Personality Architecture model, self-efficacy, idiographic approach.

The present study was aimed at investigating how self-efficacy appraisals in interpersonal situations vary depending on individual beliefs about the relevance of schematic personality attributes to the situations. In accordance with the Knowledge and Appraisal Personality Architecture (KAPA) model (Cervone, 2004, 2005), we used idiographic methods for identifying consistent intra-individual patterns of associations between self-efficacy and perceived situational relevance of attributes, i.e., how personality characteristics are relevant to situations favouring vs. hindering a successful performance. Results showed that situation-related self-efficacy levels were higher when participants believed that their schematic personality attributes help rather than obstacle a successful performance in those situations. No covariation was found when self-efficacy appraisals were related to the situational relevance of aschematic personality attributes. Comparable association patterns between self-efficacy and situational relevance of personality schematic vs aschematic attributes were found both when we took under control the perceived value of performing successfully in a given situation and when we controlled for individual differences in the Big Five domains of Extraversion and Emotional Stability. Overall, our findings support the KAPA model for the study of intra-individual personality consistency. They however also suggest that inter-individual differences contribute to predicting further variability in self-efficacy appraisals. Intraindividual and inter-individual assessment procedure may be complementary.

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