Personality and change in the frequency of religious observance

Michael P. Dunne, Nicholas G. Martin, Theresa Pangan, Andrew C. Heath

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


EPQ Psychoticism (P) is thought to be fundamental to religiosity (Francis, 1992a), while Neuroticism (N), Extraversion (E) and Lie dimensions (L) are not consistently found to be associated with religious beliefs and behaviours. Among 6463 Anglican, Other Protestant and Catholic Australian twins (aged 17-88 yr), we found that men and women who attended church regularly had low P and low N scores. Eight-year follow-up of 4993 people revealed that those who attended church frequently at time 1, but who had stopped going to church regularly by time 2, had higher N scores than people who maintained a stable pattern of frequent attendance. N may be more important than P for the long-term stability of frequent religious practice.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)527-530
Number of pages4
JournalPersonality and Individual Differences
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1997


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