From Dispositional Traits to Psychopathological Symptoms: Social-Cognitive Vulnerabilities as Intervening Mechanisms

  • Ryan Y. HongEmail author


The present research articulates a model delineating how influences of dispositional traits to psychopathological symptoms are carried by social-cognitive vulnerabilities. In two college student samples (total N = 335), it was found that social-cognitive vulnerabilities (i.e., pessimistic inferential style, ruminative style, intolerance to uncertainty, anxiety sensitivity, fear of negative evaluation, and poor self-control) fully mediated between dispositional traits (i.e., Neuroticism and Conscientiousness) and various psychopathological symptoms (i.e., depression, worry, panic, social anxiety, and antisocial behavior). In contrast, dysfunctional attitudes, looming cognitive style, and poor self-regulation did not act as intervening variables. These findings demonstrated how distal-broad dispositions might impact on specific symptoms via increasingly differentiated intervening mechanisms as reflected by various vulnerabilities more proximal-specific in the etiology of psychopathology. Furthermore, the current model was useful in clarifying the common and unique processes leading to the various forms of psychopathological symptoms.


Personality Five-factor model Vulnerabilities Depression Anxiety Antisocial behavior 


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyNational University of SingaporeSingaporeSingapore

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