Start Submission Become a Reviewer

Reading: How Many Dimensions of Personality? The „Big 5”, The „Gigantic 3” or the „Comprehensive 6”?


A- A+
Alt. Display

Research Article

How Many Dimensions of Personality? The „Big 5”, The „Gigantic 3” or the „Comprehensive 6”?


Christopher R. Brand

Department of Psychology, University of Edinburgh, 7, George Square, Edinburgh EH8 9JZ, GB
X close


Eighteen criticisms of the „Five Factor Model” of personality (FFM) are indicated : there is too much variation for comfort in the number and the nature of the personality dimensions that are currently recognized by researchers, whether in „lexical” studies or in questionnaire data. It is suggested that there are actually six main dimensions of normally-distributed human psychological difference; and that each of the six psychometric dimensions is connected with a particular underlying difference in both ability and emotion. A comprehensive scheme representing major dimensions of personality, ability and emotion is outlined. However, psychometric fusion sometimes occurs within two pairs of the Comprehensive 6 dimensions - when testing methods are less sensitive or when testees are of lower sophistication or general intelligence (g); such lack of differentiation results in only four or five dimensions being seen. Additionally, three of the six dimensions (extraversion, neuroticism and conscientiousness) are particularly easily found in conventional questionnaire studies. These three resemble the three most familiar personality concepts of Freud (id, ego, superego) and Eysenck (Extraversion, Neuroticism, Psychoticism); anyhow, a „Freudian” combination of short yet reliable ipsative versions of them yields correlations with sexual permissiveness and militarism/punitiveness. Like g itself, other dimensions of personality crystallize into differences in attainment and into attitudes regarding sex and aggression.

How to Cite: Brand, C.R., 1994. How Many Dimensions of Personality? The „Big 5”, The „Gigantic 3” or the „Comprehensive 6”?. Psychologica Belgica, 34(4), pp.257–273. DOI:
Published on 01 Jan 1994.
Peer Reviewed


  • PDF (EN)

    comments powered by Disqus