Are the sources of interest the same for everyone? Using multilevel mixture models to explore individual differences in appraisal structures.

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Robert A. Henson, Associate Professor (Creator)
Paul Silvia, Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: How does personality influence the relationship between appraisals and emotions? Recent research suggests individual differences in appraisal structures: people may differ in an emotion's appraisal pattern. We explored individual differences in interest's appraisal structure, assessed as the within-person covariance of appraisals with interest. People viewed images of abstract visual art and provided ratings of interest and of interest's appraisals (novelty–complexity and coping potential) for each picture. A multilevel mixture model found two between-person classes that reflected distinct within-person appraisal styles. For people in the larger class (68%), the novelty–complexity appraisal had a stronger effect on interest; for people in the smaller class (32%), the coping potential appraisal had a stronger effect. People in the larger class were significantly higher in appetitive traits related to novelty seeking (e.g., sensation seeking, openness to experience, and trait curiosity), suggesting that the appraisal classes have substantive meaning. We conclude by discussing the value of within-person mixture models for the study of personality and appraisal.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2009
interest, personality, multilevel modeling, latent-class analysis, finite mixture models

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