Let me read your mind: Personality judgments based on a person's natural stream of thought

Shannon E. Holleran, Matthias R. Mehl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

22 Scopus citations

Abstract

Past research on the accuracy of personality judgments has largely focused on person perception scenarios that are public in nature (e.g., face-to-face interactions, personal websites). This study investigated the accuracy of personality judgments on the basis of highly private information: a person's natural stream of thought. Nine naïve judges rated the personality of 90 targets on the basis of their 20-min stream-of-consciousness essays. Judges' level of accuracy was significant and substantial for all Big Five dimensions. The substantial and relatively uniform accuracy across all Big Five dimensions suggests that a person's moment-to-moment thoughts provide good information for the accurate judgment of personality in general rather than specific diagnostic information for the accurate judgment of private traits such as Neuroticism.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)747-754
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Research in Personality
Volume42
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2008

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Keywords

  • Person perception
  • Personality judgment
  • Stream of consciousness

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Psychology(all)

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