Cognitive style: The role of personality and need for cognition in younger and older adults

Abstract

Cognitive style seems to influence cognitive activities in many important ways. A recently proposed Cognitive style indicator (CoSI) operationalizes three cognitive styles: knowing, planning and creating style. This study was designed to investigate the relation of five factor personality traits and Need for Cognition (NFC) with regard to a preference towards a certain cognitive style, depending on the age of participants. A sample of students (n = 108) and middle-aged employed adults (n = 115) completed CoSI, Rational-Experiential Inventory (REI-10) and Ten Item Personality Inventory (TIPI). The results of exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis have validated CoSI on an independent sample and confirmed its originally proposed 3-factor structure. Furthermore, the mediation model with multigroup structure for two age cohorts highlighted several significant connections between personality traits, NFC and three hypothesized cognitive styles. Results suggest that the relations between personality traits and cognitive style differ in different age groups, and are partially or totally mediated by NFC.

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Correspondence to Andrea Vranic.

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Vranic, A., Rebernjak, B. & Martincevic, M. Cognitive style: The role of personality and need for cognition in younger and older adults. Curr Psychol (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12144-019-00388-6

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Keywords

  • Cognitive style indicator (CoSI)
  • Need for cognition
  • Personality
  • Mediation
  • Age differences