The Five-Factor Model and the NEO Inventories

Paul T. Costa, Robert R. McCrae

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

6 Scopus citations


Personality traits provide distal explanations for behavior and are compatible with personality development, useful in clinical applications, and intrinsically interesting. They must, however, be understood in the context of a broader system of personality functioning. One of the recurring challenges to personality psychology has been the classification of personality traits into a meaningful system. Introduced in the 1980s, the Five-Factor Model (FFM) is a comprehensive and universal model applicable to psychiatric as well as normal samples. The NEO Inventories are operationalizations of the FFM, and offer computer administration and interpretation. They are available in a number of languages and use a novel approach to protocol validity. Research using the NEO Inventories has led to a reconceptualization of the importance of the person in the social sciences, and may be the basis for a revolutionary new approach to the diagnosis of personality disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationOxford Handbook of Personality Assessment
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780199940592
ISBN (Print)9780195366877
StatePublished - Sep 18 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Diagnosis
  • Five-factor model
  • Neo inventories
  • Personality
  • Personality disorders
  • Personality traits
  • Psychology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)


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