Big Five Personality Traits and Academic Performance of Post Graduate Students

Author Name(s): Vandana Gandhi, Prashant Chhajer, Vishal Mehta
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Personality traits have been significantly affecting human behaviour and there is evidence in literature to prove that performance is correlated to these traits. The traits, if identified early can be helpful in understanding the performance / non- performance of human beings, thus, creating an opportunity to improve upon these traits with an objective to improve performance. The present study is focused on understanding the traits exhibited by the Post Graduate students and linking their academic performance with these traits. The objective is to understand which personality traits lead to better performance as compared to others. The study would be helpful in understanding how the performance of students can be improved by working upon the personality of the students. Students differ in learning and they feel comfortable and perform best in an environment which suits their personality. Students’ academic performance is one of the crucial elements that provides them the opportunity to excel in their career. Big Five personality model (OCEAN) is used to understand the personality traits of students. Regression analysis has been done to understand the effect of each parameter on the performance level.

Keywords Personality, Traits, OCEAN, Performance



Traditionally, across the globe, academic performance has been associated with intelligence rather than anything else. It was only in 1900s’ that research was carried out to check the possibility of personality traits affecting the academic performance. Lot of researchers studied this hitherto rarely covered aspect. Cattell & Butcher, 1968; Eysenck, 1967; Kline & Gale, 1977 ; explored this relationship, while Mehta & Kumar, 1985, were of the opinion that personality factors do not have any significant influence on the academic performance. Certain other experts have opined that academic performance depends both on motivation and intelligence,( Busato, Prins, Elshout, & Hamaker, 1999). They felt that the process of learning is closely related to both the factors. Intelligence, answer a basic question ‘what a person can do’ while personality gives an idea as to ‘how the person will do it’. It is the perfect combination of ‘what’ and ‘how’ that differentiates an academically successful candidate from a not so successful or an unsuccessful one. The purpose of this study is to explore the possibility of personality traits affecting the results of the students pursuing Post Graduation in the field of Management.

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