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Original Research

RMJ. 2018; 43(1): 39-44

Relationship between birth order, personality and academic performance

Rana Mozammil Shamsher Khan, Kalsoom Nawaz, Rana Modassir Shamsher Khan, Sehr Yaseen, Anum Rouf, Madawa Maryam, Saba Tabassum.

Objective: To assess the relationship of birth order, personality factors and academic performance.
Methodology: This cross sectional study was carried out at KMS medical college, Sialkot, Pakistan during the month of February 2017. It included 148 eligible consenting 3rd and 4th year medical students who were firstborn, middle, last and only born; 37 from each category were included. Students with past or family history of psychiatric illness, using psychotropic medicine, severe physical and psychiatric illness were excluded. Big Five Inventory-10 was administered, which has personality factors namely openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness and neuroticism. Academic performance was assessed by their annual university examination results. Statistical analysis was done by SPSS v 21.
Results: Out of 148 students, 53 (35.8%) were male while 95 (64.2%) were female. Mean age was 21.13 0.89 years (range 20 to 22). 104 (70.7%) belonged to middle income families. There was no statistically significant difference across the birth order in personality factor of openness (F=1.01) conscientiousness (F=2.12) extraversion (F=1.13) agreeableness (F=.67) neuroticism (F=2.19) and academic performance (F=1.042). Conscientiousness was positively while extraversion was negatively correlated with academic performance. Rest of the 3 personality factors had no significant correlation with academic performance.
Conclusion: Birth order had no relationship with personality factors and academic performance. Of the big five personality factors, conscientiousness had significant positive correlation with academic performance while extraversion had negative correlation.

Key words: Birth order, big five, personality, academic performance

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