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General Factor of Personality (GFPQ) Test

The General Factor of Personality (GFP) is a theoretical construct in personality psychology that represents a single overarching dimension encompassing the positive aspects of various personality traits. It is somewhat analogous to the general intelligence factor in cognitive psychology, which suggests a single underlying factor influencing all cognitive abilities.

GFP integrates multiple dimensions of personality traits, such as the Big Five traits. High GFP scores indicate high levels of socially desirable traits across these dimensions. Such individuals are typically seen as more socially adept, emotionally stable, cooperative, and capable of handling stress and new situations effectively. They tend to exhibit a blend of high sociability, emotional regulation, and intellectual curiosity. In short, some researchers claim that people with high GFP simply have an easier time in life.

What is your GFP score? For each of the following statements, indicate your response below.

Question 1 of 20

I like activities involving risks, even if they are dangerous.



The GFPQ Test is based on the scientific paper Fernández-Berrocal, P., & Extremera, N. (2010). General Factor of Personality Questionnaire (GFPQ): Only One Factor to Understand Personality? The Spanish Journal of Psychology, 13(1), 5-17. Universidad Complutense de Madrid.

The General Factor of Personality (GFP) theory proposes that there is a single overarching dimension of personality that influences and integrates various traits and behaviors. This concept parallels the idea of a general intelligence factor (g factor) in cognitive psychology, suggesting that individuals vary along a continuum of this overarching personality dimension. The GFP theory seeks to identify and measure this general factor to better understand how different personality traits interact and contribute to overall behavioral tendencies and social outcomes.

Origins and Development of GFP Theory

The GFP theory has its roots in research on the structure of personality traits. Traditionally, personality psychologists have identified multiple dimensions of personality, such as the Big Five traits (openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism), which are considered relatively independent of each other. However, proponents of the GFP theory argue that these traits are not completely independent but rather interconnected, reflecting a higher-order factor that encompasses them all.

The development of the GFP theory has involved both empirical research and theoretical integration. Studies using factor analysis techniques have consistently found evidence for a higher-order factor that underlies and integrates the variance in lower-order personality traits. This research has been crucial in shaping the understanding of how personality traits relate to each other and contribute to overall behavioral patterns.

Components of GFP: Alpha and Beta

The GFP theory often conceptualizes the general factor as consisting of two main components:

  • Alpha (Stability): This component includes traits related to emotional stability, agreeableness, and conscientiousness. Individuals high in Alpha are characterized by their emotional resilience, agreeable nature, and conscientious approach to tasks and responsibilities. These traits contribute to social harmony, reliability, and the ability to manage stress effectively.
  • Beta (Plasticity): This component encompasses traits associated with extraversion and openness to experience. High Beta individuals tend to be sociable, curious, creative, and open to new ideas and experiences. They are often adaptable, flexible in their thinking, and willing to explore different perspectives and possibilities.

Together, Alpha and Beta represent complementary aspects of the GFP, capturing both stable, consistent behavioral tendencies (Alpha) and flexible, adaptive responses to changing environments (Beta).

Implications and Applications of GFP Theory

The GFP theory has several implications for understanding personality and its impact on various life outcomes:

  • Predictive Power: Research suggests that individuals with high GFP scores are more likely to exhibit socially desirable behaviors and achieve positive outcomes in relationships, work, and health. They are perceived as likable, competent, and capable of handling challenges effectively.
  • Intervention and Development: Understanding the GFP can inform interventions aimed at enhancing personal growth and well-being. For example, interventions that target the development of specific traits related to Alpha (e.g., emotional regulation, conscientiousness) or Beta (e.g., creativity, openness) can help individuals improve their overall personality functioning.
  • Cross-Cultural Considerations: The universality of GFP traits across different cultures and societies is an area of ongoing research. While some traits may vary in their expression or importance across cultures, the general principles of stability and plasticity are thought to be fundamental to human personality functioning.

Criticisms and Debates

Despite its strengths, the GFP theory is not without criticism and debate within the field of personality psychology:

  • Oversimplification: Critics argue that reducing personality to a single general factor may oversimplify the complexity and richness of individual differences. Personality is multidimensional, and different traits may interact in complex ways that cannot be fully captured by a single factor.
  • Cultural Variability: The extent to which GFP traits are universally applicable across diverse cultural contexts remains a topic of debate. Some researchers argue that certain traits emphasized in Western contexts may not hold the same significance or meaning in other cultural settings.
  • Measurement Challenges: Measuring the GFP poses methodological challenges, particularly in ensuring that assessments capture the full range of personality traits and their interactions accurately.


In summary, the General Factor of Personality (GFP) theory represents a significant advancement in understanding the structure and integration of personality traits. By identifying a general factor that underlies individual differences in behavior and traits, the GFP theory provides a framework for exploring how personality influences various aspects of life. While the theory continues to evolve and face scrutiny, it offers valuable insights into the complex interplay between stable and adaptive aspects of human personality.

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Why Use This Test?

1. Free. This test is provided to you free of charge and allows you to obtain your scores related to your general factor of personality (GFP).

2. Statistical controls. Test scores are logged into an anonymized database. Statistical analysis of the test is conducted to ensure maximum accuracy and validity of the test scores.

3. Made by professionals. The present test has been made with the input of people who work professionally in psychology and individual differences research.