Creative interests and personality: Scientific versus artistic creativity

Wiernik, B. M., Dilchert, S., & Ones, D. S.
Zeitschrift für Arbeits- und Organisationspsychologie.
(in press)

The present study used intraindividual criterion profile analysis to investigate the relationship between creative artistic and investigative interests and the Big Five personality traits. In 19 samples, we found that artistic and investigative interests showed distinct intraindividual personality profile patterns. Investigative interests were associated with elevated openness to intellect, conscientiousness, and emotional stability and low extraversion and agreeableness, relative to individuals’ other traits. Artistic interests were associated with personal strengths for openness to experiences and personal weaknesses for conscientiousness, assertiveness, and emotional stability. Across creative interests, profile pattern, not absolute trait level, drove the relationship between personality traits and interests. These findings replicated across numerous personality inventories and levels of interest specificity (RIASEC, basic interests, occupation-specific interests). We discuss the implications of these results for the complementary use of personality and interest scales in vocational counseling and personnel selection.