Over the past 75 years, the study of personality and personality disorders has been informed considerably by an impressive array of psychometric instruments. Many of these tests draw on the perspective that personality features can be conceptualized in terms of latent traits that vary dimensionally across the population. A purely trait-oriented approach to personality, however, might overlook heterogeneity that is related to similarities among subgroups of people. This article describes how factor mixture modeling (FMM), which incorporates both categories and dimensions, can be used to represent person-oriented and trait-oriented variability in the latent structure of personality. We provide an overview of different forms of FMM that vary in the degree to which they emphasize trait-versus person-oriented variability. We also provide practical guidelines for applying FMM to personality data, and we illustrate model fitting and interpretation using an empirical analysis of general personality dysfunction.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Clinical Psychology
- Psychiatry and Mental health
- Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis