Hidden framings and hidden asymmetries in the measurement of personality––A combined lens-model and frame-of-reference perspective

Julian Schulze, Stephen G. West, Jan Philipp Freudenstein, Philipp Schäpers, Patrick Mussel, Michael Eid, Stefan Krumm

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective: The symmetry principle and the frame-of-reference perspective have each made contributions to improving the measurement of personality. Although each perspective is valuable in its own right, we argue that even greater improvement can be achieved through the combination of both. Therefore, the goal of the current article was to show the value of a combined lens-model and frame-of-reference perspective. Method: We conducted a literature review to summarize relevant research findings that shed light on the interplay of both perspectives and developed an integrative model. Results: Based on the literature review and on theoretical grounds, we argue that a basic premise of the frame-of-reference literature––that personality items are open to interpretation and allow individuals to impose their own contextual framings––should be considered from a symmetry perspective. Unintended context-specificity in items may “spread” to personality facets and domains, and thus, impact the symmetry of personality measures with other criteria. As the individuals´ frames-of-reference and (a)symmetric relationships are not always apparent, we term them as “hidden.”. Conclusions: The proposed combination of lens-model and frame-of-reference perspectives provides further insights into current issues in personality research and uncovers important avenues for future research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)357-375
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of personality
Volume89
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2021

Keywords

  • Big Five
  • frame-of-reference
  • personality
  • personality measurement
  • symmetry principle
  • validity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology

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