Journal article

Developing a comprehensive and comparative questionnaire for measuring personality in chimpanzees using a simultaneous top-down/bottom-up design

Hani D Freeman, Sarah F Brosnan, Lydia M Hopper, Susan P Lambeth, Steven J Schapiro, Samuel D Gosling

American Journal of Primatology | WILEY | Published : 2013


One effective method for measuring personality in primates is to use personality trait ratings to distill the experience of people familiar with the individual animals. Previous rating instruments were created using either top-down or bottom-up approaches. Top-down approaches, which essentially adapt instruments originally designed for use with another species, can unfortunately lead to the inclusion of traits irrelevant to chimpanzees or fail to include all relevant aspects of chimpanzee personality. Conversely, because bottom-up approaches derive traits specifically for chimpanzees, their unique items may impede comparisons with findings in other studies and other species. To address the l..

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Awarded by NSF CAREER award

Awarded by NIH/NCRR


Funding Acknowledgements

We are grateful to Alex Weiss, Lindsay Murray and two anonymous reviewers for their thoughtful feedback on this manuscript and to Alex Weiss for sharing the format of his scale with us. We would also like to thank Stephanie Braccini, Matthew Heintz, Lori Panu, and Jamie Russell for recommending personality traits to add to the scale based on their experience in working with chimpanzees. In addition, we thank the following people for providing ratings of the chimpanzees: Leilani Case, Paula Castle, Christina Cunningham, Norma Fling, Molly Gardener, Jeffery Haller, Rachel Haller, Phil Hendrix, Mary Kay, Laura Kelly, Elizabeth Lindemann, Ty McAdams, Judy McAuliffe, Michelle Mobley, Amanda Ott, Mary Owens, Chelsea Piper, Erica Thiele, and Heather Webb. For help collecting the behavioral data we are grateful to Mary Catherine Mareno and Amanda Richardson; and for help with data entry we thank Daniel Hale, Jamie Jackson, Brianna Jones, Maria Martinez, Jennifer Rodriguez, and Jessica Waldrop. We also thank Marie Butcher for helping to provide feedback regarding the number of personality factors. The collection of the behavioral data was funded by a grant from the MacArthur Foundation Preferences Network to Joan B. Silk, Joseph Henrich, and Daniel Povinelli. H.D.F., S.F.B., and L.M.H. were in part funded by an NSF CAREER award (SES 0847351) to S.F.B. Support for the chimpanzee colony comes from NIH/NCRR U42-RR015090. UTMDACC is fully accredited by AAALAC.