RESEARCH PAPER
Personality and well-being in Black and White South African emerging adults
 
More details
Hide details
1
University of Pretoria, South Africa
2
Tilburg University, The Netherlands and University of Johannesburg, South Africa
3
Tilburg University, The Netherlands and North-West University, South Africa and University of Queensland, Australia
4
University of Witswatersrand, South Africa
5
University of Cape Town, South Africa
6
University of Western Cape, South Africa
7
University of the Free State, South Africa
Submission date: 2016-05-15
Final revision date: 2016-10-10
Acceptance date: 2016-11-16
Online publication date: 2016-12-13
Publication date: 2017-03-31
 
Current Issues in Personality Psychology 2017;5(1):11–20
 
KEYWORDS
TOPICS
ABSTRACT
Background
In the last ten years, the South African Personality Inventory (SAPI) has been developed as an indigenous measurement of personality for the multi-cultural environment of South Africa. The aim of the SAPI is to assess personality in an unbiased and equivalent way. For the purpose of this study, we used an 82-item version of the SAPI which measures nine factors (Conscientiousness, Emotional Stability, Extraversion, Facilitating, Integrity, Intellect, Openness, Relationship Harmony and Soft-heartedness).

Participants and procedure
A cross-sectional survey was conducted using the SAPI, the General Health Questionnaire and the Brief Multidimensional Student Life Satisfaction Scale. A purposive sample was drawn from Black and White emerging adults (N = 990). We assessed the relationship between personality aspects and well-being across groups in a multiple group structural equation model (SEM) using the SPSS and AMOS programs.

Results
Black emerging adults showed evidence of more individualistic-inclined personality features, while the White emerging adults seem to demonstrate more collectivistic features. In terms of health, the White emerging adults experience more life satisfaction than their Black counterparts. Conscientiousness, emotional stability, extraversion, facilitating and openness predict well-being among emerging adults.

Conclusions
This study contributes to expanding the nomological network of the SAPI, and it enhances knowledge pertaining to the link between personality and well-being of emerging adults in South Africa. Understanding which factors contribute to poor mental health and lack of life satisfaction may lead to innovation programmes for emerging adults to assist them in dealing with negative health outcomes possibly associated with living in multicultural contexts.
 
REFERENCES (53)
1.
Adams, B. G., Van de Vijver, F. J. R., & De Bruin, G. P. (2012). Identity in South Africa: Examining self descriptions across ethnic groups. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 30, 377–388.
 
2.
Anglim, J., & Grant, S. (2014). Predicting psychological and subjective well-being from personality: Incremental prediction from 30 facets over the Big 5. Journal of Happiness Studies, 15, 1–22. doi: 10.1007/s10902-014-9583-7.
 
3.
Black, S. A., & Porter, L. J. (1996). Identification of the critical factors of TQM. Decision Sciences, 27, 1–21.
 
4.
Bollen, K. A. (1989). Structural equations with latent variables. New York, NY: Wiley.
 
5.
Booysen, L. (2001). The duality in South African leadership: Afrocentric or Eurocentric. South African Journal of Labour Relations, 25, 36–64.
 
6.
Bruwer, M. (2016). Assessing the nomological network of the South African Personality Inventory (Unpublished master’s dissertation). North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa.
 
7.
Cropanzano, R., & Dasborough, M. T. (2015). Dynamic models of well-being: Implications of affective events theory for expanding current views on personality and climate. European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, 24, 844–847. doi: 10.1080/1359432X.2015.1072245.
 
8.
Dempster, A. P., Laird, N. M., & Rubin, D. B. (1977). Maximum Likelihood from Incomplete Data via the EM Algorithm. Journal of the Royal Statistical Society, 39, 1–38.
 
9.
De Raad, B., Barelds, D. P. H., Timmerman, M. E., De Roover, K., Mlacic, B., & Church, A. T. (2014). Towards a Pan-cultural Personality Structure: Input from 11 psycholexical studies. European Journal of Personality, 28, 497–510.
 
10.
Donoghue, S., Strydom, N., Andrews, L., Pentecost, R., & De Klerk, H. M. (2015). Differences between Black and White South Africans in product failure attributions, anger and complaint behaviour. International Journal of Consumer Studies, 40, 257–267.
 
11.
Ebrahim, A., Botha, F., & Snowball, J. (2013). Determinants of life satisfaction among race groups in South Africa. Development Southern Africa, 30, 168–185. doi: 10.1080/0376835X.2013.797227.
 
12.
Erdogan, B., Bauer, T. N., Truxillo, D. N., & Mansfield, L. R. (2012). Whistle while you work: A review of the life satisfaction literature. Journal of Management, 38, 1038–1083. doi: 10.1177/.
 
13.
0149206311429379.
 
14.
Feldman, A., & Msibi, S. (2014). Influence of cross- cultural leadership on organizational culture: Arcelormittal, Newcastle, a South African perspective. African Journal of Hospitality, Tourism and Leisure, 3, 1–9.
 
15.
Fetvadjiev, V. H., Meiring, D., Van de Vijver, F. J. R., Nel, J. A., & Hill, C. (2015). The South African Personality Inventory (SAPI): An Indigenous Personality Tool for the Country’s Main Ethnocultural Groups. Psychological Assessment, 27, 827–837. doi: 10.1037/pas0000078.
 
16.
Goldberg, D. (1972). The detection of psychiatric illness by questionnaire: A technique for the identification and assessment of non-psychotic psychiatric illness. London, United Kingdom: Oxford University Press.
 
17.
Govind, S. (2015). The leadership experience: An example of in the Life Assurance sector in South Africa (Unpublished master’s dissertation). University of Johannesburg, Johannesburg, South Africa.
 
18.
Harvergal, C. (2016, February 24). ANC condemns latest unrest at South Africa’s universities. Retrieved from https://www.timeshighereducati....
 
19.
Heuchert, J., Parker, W., Stumpf, H., & Myburgh, C. (2000). The five-factor model of personality in South African college students. American Behavioral Scientist, 44, 112–125. doi: 10.1177/00027640021956125.
 
20.
Hill, C., Nel, J. A., van der Vijver, F. J. R., Meiring, D., Valchev, V. H., Adams, B. G., & de Bruin, G. P. (2013). Developing and testing items for the South African personality inventory (SAPI). South African Journal of Industrial Psychology, 39, 2–27.
 
21.
Hoyle, R. H. (ed.). (1995). Structural equation modeling: Concepts, issues, and applications. London, United Kingdom: Sage Publications.
 
22.
Hu, L., & Bentler, P. M. (1999). Cutoff criteria for fit indexes in covariance structure analysis: Conventional criteria versus new alternatives. Structural Equation Modeling, 6, 1–55.
 
23.
Huebner, E. S., Nagle, R. J., & Suldo, S. M. (2003). Quality of life assessment in child and adolescent health care: The Multidimensional Students’ Life Satisfaction Scale (MSLSS). In J. Sirgy, D. Rahtz, & A. C. Samli (eds.), Advances in Quality-of-Life Theory and Research (pp. 179–190). Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Press.
 
24.
Klimstra, T. A., Luyckx, K., Hale, W. W., III, Meeus, W. H. J., van Lier, P. A. C., & Frijns, T. (2010). Short-term fluctuations in identity: Introducing a micro-level approach to identity formation. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 99, 191–202.
 
25.
Laher, S. (2013). Understanding the Five-Factor Model and Five-Factor Theory through a South African cultural lens. South African Journal of Psychology, 43, 208–221.
 
26.
Laher, S., & Cockcroft, K. (2014). Psychological assessment in post-apartheid South Africa: The way forward. South African Journal of Psychology, 44, 303–314.
 
27.
Lance, C. E., Butts, M. M., & Michels, L. C. (2006). The sources of four commonly reported cut-off criteria what did they really say? Organizational Research Methods, 9, 202–220. doi: 10.1177/1094428105284919.
 
28.
Lee, K., & Ashton, M. C. (2008). The HEXACO personality factors in the indigenous personality lexicons of English and 11 other languages. Journal of Personality, 76, 1001–1053.
 
29.
Matsimbi, W. E. (1997). Cross-cultural generalisability of the five-factor-model: A study on South African white collar males (Unpublished master’s dissertation). University of Witswatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.
 
30.
Meiring, D., Van de Vijver, F. J. R., & Rothmann, S. (2006). Bias in an adapted version of the 15FQ+ in RSA. South African Journal of Psychology, 36, 340–356.
 
31.
Meiring, D., Van de Vijver, A. J. R., Rothmann, S., & Barrick, M. R. (2005). Construct, item, and method bias of cognitive and personality measures in South Africa. South African Journal of Industrial Psychology, 31, 1–8.
 
32.
Neff, D. F. (2007). Subjective well-being, poverty and ethnicity in South Africa: Insights from an exploratory analysis. Social Indicators Research, 80, 313–341.
 
33.
Neill, J. (2003). Personality and individual differences: An undergraduate psychology course. Retrieved from http://www.wilderdom.com/perso....
 
34.
Nel, J. A., Fetvadjiev, V. H., Rothmann, S., Van de Vijver, F. R. J., Meiring, D., & Hill, C. (2016). Developing psychometric instruments for a specific context: The South African Personality Inventory. In R. Ferreira (ed.), Thinking innovatively about psychological assessment in a context of diversity (pp. 86–101). Cape Town, South Africa: Juta.
 
35.
Nel, J. A., Valchev, V. H., Rothmann, S., Van de Vijver, F. J. R., Meiring, D., & De Bruin, G. P. (2012). Exploring the personality structure in the 11 languages of South Africa. Journal of Personality, 80, 915–948. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-6494.2011.00751.x.
 
36.
Nel, N., Nel, J. A., Adams, B. G., & De Beer, L. T. (2015). Assessing cultural intelligence, personality and identity amongst young white Afrikaans-speaking students: A preliminary study. South African Journal of Human Resource Management, 13, 1–12.
 
37.
Ozer, D. J., & Benet-Martinez, V. (2006). Personality and the prediction of consequential outcomes. Annual Review of Psychology, 57, 401–421. doi: 10.1146/annurev.psych.57.102904.190127.
 
38.
Posel, D., & Casale, D. (2016). Differences in subjective well-being within households: An analysis of married and cohabiting couples in South Africa. African Review of Economics and Finance, 7, 32–52.
 
39.
Ramsay, L. J., Taylor, N., De Bruin, G. P., & Meiring, D. (2008). The Big Five personality factors at work: A South African validation study. In J. Deller (ed.), Research contributions to personality at work (pp. 99–114). Munich, Germany: Rainer Hampp Verlag.
 
40.
Saucier, G., & Goldberg, L. (2001). Lexical studies of indigenous personality factors: Premises, products, and prospects. Journal of Personality, 69, 847–879. http://doi.org/10.1111/1467-64....
 
41.
Schatz, E., Angotti, N., Madhavan, S., & Sennott, C. (2015). Working with teams of “insiders”: qualitative approaches to data collection in the Global South. Demographic Research, 32, 369–396.
 
42.
Schwartz, S. J., Beyers, W., Luyckx, K., Soenens, B., Zamboanga, B. L., Forthun, L. F., Hardy, S. A., Vazsonyi, A. T., Ham, L. S., Kim, S. Y., Whitbourne, S. K., & Waterman, A. S. (2011). Examining the light and dark sides of emerging adults’ identity: A study of identity status differences in positive and negative psychosocial functioning. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 40, 839–859.
 
43.
Seligman, M. E. P. (2012). Flourishing: A visionary new understanding of happiness and well-being. New York, NY: Free Press.
 
44.
Statistics South Africa. (2011). Census 2011. Retrieved from http://www.statssa.gov.za/publ....
 
45.
Steel, P., Schmidt, J., & Shultz, J. (2008). Refining the relationship between personality and subjective well-being. Psychological Bulletin, 134, 138–161.
 
46.
Taylor, I. A. (2000). The construct comparability of the NEO-PI-R questionnaire for black and white employees (Unpublished doctoral thesis). University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa.
 
47.
Taylor, N., & De Bruin, G. P. (2005). Manual of the Basic Traits Inventory. Johannesburg, South Africa: JvR.
 
48.
Valchev, V. H., Nel, J. A., Van de Vijver, F. J. R., Meiring, D., De Bruin, G. P., & Rothmann, S. (2013). Similarities and differences in implicit personality concepts across ethno-cultural groups in South Africa. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 44, 365–388. doi: 10.1177/0022022112443856.
 
49.
Valchev, V. H., Van de Vijver, F. J. R., Nel, J. A., Rothmann, S., Meiring, D., & De Bruin, G. P. (2011). Implicit personality conceptions of the Nguni cultural-linguistic groups of South Africa. Cross-Cultural Research, 45, 235–266. doi: 10.1177/1069397111402462.
 
50.
Van de Vijver, F. J. R., & Leung, K. (1997). Methods and data analysis for cross-cultural research. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.
 
51.
Van Jaarsveld, W. (2015). Testing a leadership model among managers (Unpublished master’s dissertation). North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa.
 
52.
Van Zyl, C. J. (2014). The psychometric properties of the Emotional Quotient Inventory 2.0 in South Africa: Original research. South African Journal of Industrial Psychology, 40, 1–8.
 
53.
Wallis, T., & Birt, M. (2003). A comparison of native and non-native English-speaking groups’ understanding of the vocabulary contained in the 16PF (SA92). South African Journal of Psychology, 33, 182–190.
 
eISSN:2353-561X
ISSN:2353-4192