Personality correlates of individual differences in electrodermal lability

Maribel Cruz1, Randy J. Larsen1
1University of Michigan, United States
Cite this article:  Cruz, M., & Larsen, R. J. (1995). Personality correlates of individual differences in electrodermal lability. Social Behavior and Personality: An international journal, 23(1), 93-104.

Volume 23 Issue 1 | e785 | Published: February 1995 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.1995.23.1.93

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This study examined relationships between individual differences in the spontaneous fluctuation rate of electrodermal activity (EDA lability) and a battery of personality measures. In contrast to previous work, which emphasizes cognitive correlates of EDA lability, in this study a broad-band personality inventory and specific emotion-relevant personality dispositions were administered. A sample of 62 male and female undergraduates completed a battery of personality questionnaires and a laboratory session where spontaneous, nonspecific skin conductance responses were recorded while the subject was at rest in a sound-attenuated and dimly lit room. The strongest personality correlate of resting EDA lability, consistent across sexes, was neuroticism (N), with a high N Ss exhibiting more spontaneous sympathetic nervous system activity than low N Ss. Beyond Neuroticism, other results reveal a different pattern of personality correlates of EDA lability in men and women. Discussion focuses on possible sources for this sex difference.
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