Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Sam McFarland, Daniel Roenker, John O'Connor

Degree Program

Department of Psychology

Degree Type

Master of Arts


This study attempts to determine the influence of age and education on the consistency of one's responses to items on various personality inventories. It was hypothesized that with increased age and education, people develop more stable and coherent personality structures. This results in more internally consistent responses to the personality measures used in this study (e.g., the Marlowe-Crowne Social Desirability Scale, the Dogmatism Scale, and the Private Self-Consciousness Scale). Alpha reliabilities showed that only three of the eight scales gave a positive relationship between age and internal consistency, while only two of the eight scales were supportive of a positive relationship between education and internal consistency. Possible moderators of the age or education and internal consistency relationship, such as sentence difficulty, words not understood, and self-reflection, were found to have no influence on the relationship. The correlations between both age and education with internal consistency were moderate in strength, r = .23 and r = .37, respectively. When the mean standard deviations for each age or education group on each personality scale were analyzed by one-way ANOVA's, most of the scales showed significant group differences with the older and more educated subjects showing more consistency in their responses.


Psychology | Social and Behavioral Sciences

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Psychology Commons