Examining the validity of driver prototypes using driving-specific measures of personality and coping

Machin, M. Anthony (2010) Examining the validity of driver prototypes using driving-specific measures of personality and coping. In: 27th International Congress of Applied Psychology, 11-16 Jul 2010, Melbourne, Australia.

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Abstract

This research examines the validity of using driving-specific measures of personality and coping to develop driver prototypes. Previous research has used the Five-factor Model (FFM) of personality to classify drivers into three common configurations: resilient drivers, overcontrolled drivers and under-controlled drivers. Self-report data from drivers were analysed using cluster analysis in order to determine whether a similar set of patterns emerged when driving-specific measures were used and whether these patterns were linked to driving behaviour and accidents. The 402 participants (323 females; 79 males) were mainly first to third year psychology students. The Driver Stress Inventory (DSI; Matthews, Desmond, Joyner, Carcary, & Gilliland, 1997) measured the following characteristics: Aggression, Hazard Monitoring, Thrill Seeking, Dislike of Driving, and Fatigue Proneness. The Driver Coping Questionnaire (DCQ; Matthews, et al., 1997) measured confrontive coping, task-focused coping, emotion-focused coping, reappraisal, and avoidance. All scales were found to be reliable with coefficient alphas of at least .70. Data were also obtained on the drivers’ level of self-reported speeding (measured using six items with an alpha of .84), their number of near misses in the previous six months (one item), and their number of accidents in the last six months (one item). A two-step clustering procedure produced a result with three clusters in the solution. Cluster 1 (N = 152) was defined lower task-focused and lower reappraisal) and greater aggression and thrill-seeking. Cluster 2 (N = 150) was defined by more adaptive coping (lower confrontive, higher task-focused and higher reappraisal), lower aggression and greater hazard monitoring. The third cluster (N = 98) was defined by more moderate scores on the coping scales (apart from a much greater level of emotion-focused coping), higher dislike of driving, and higher fatigue proneness. Validation against the three outcome measures showed that cluster 2 reported significantly less self-reported speeding than cluster 3 which was significantly less than cluster 1. Cluster 2 also reported significantly smaller number of near misses than clusters 2 and 3. Cluster 2 reported significantly fewer accidents than cluster 3. The cluster analysis confirmed that three subtypes of drivers can be identified from driver-specific measures of personality and coping. These subtypes differ in their driving behaviour with one cluster being linked with better driving outcomes (cluster 2) while clusters 3 and 1 were most at risk of adverse outcomes. These clusters may also respond differently to road safety messages particularly as cluster 3 expressed a strong dislike of driving and greater emotional exhaustion from driving.


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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Speech)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Speech presentation - only abstracts published in conference proceedings, as supplied here.
Depositing User: Mrs Melissa Jarick
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Sciences - Department of Psychology
Date Deposited: 25 Aug 2010 05:45
Last Modified: 30 Sep 2014 01:30
Uncontrolled Keywords: personality; coping; driver prototypes; big five model of personality
Fields of Research (FOR2008): 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170103 Educational Psychology
17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170109 Personality, Abilities and Assessment
17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170107 Industrial and Organisational Psychology
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO2008): E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/8615

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