Personality predictors of peer-rated adjustment and likeability: a three-year longitudinal study
We hypothesized that girls would be more responsive than boys to opposite sex characteristics that indicated the likelihood of worldly success (i.e., academic ability) and pro-social behaviour (i.e., Conscientiousness (C), Agreeableness (A), and low Psychoticism (P)). Students (381 boys; 389 girls) completed individual difference measures in their first year of high school (Grade 7; Mean age 12.28) and then at approximate twelve month intervals for the next three years. Peer-rated adjustment and likeability ratings were obtained in Grades 9 and 10. Results indicated that the extent a girl viewed a boy as adjusted was influenced by that boy's level of A, C, and P. Boys were relatively uninfluenced by these characteristics in girls. Both boys and girls were responsive to pro-social traits in the same sex. The only variable that related to liking in the opposite sex was extraversion. We discuss the implications of these findings for understanding peer relationships.