Continuum-hierarchical model of personality


  • Olha Sannikova Doctor of Psychological Sciences, Professor, Honored Worker of Science and Technology of Ukraine, Honorary Academician of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Head of the Department of General and Differential Psychology of the South Ukrainian National Pedagogical University named after KD Ushinsky, member of the editorial board and permanent author of the journal Psychology and Society, Odesa.



differential psychology, theoretical model, structure of personality, continuum, hierarchy, formal-dynamic substructure, content-personal substructure


A continuum-hierarchical model of the personality structure, interpreted as a macrosystem, which is formed from multilevel, interdependent subsystems with original psychological characteristics is proposed in an analytical study. Primarily, a formal-dynamic, content-personal and social-imperative levels of developmental personality functioning is singled out, which combine two zones of intersection – qualitative characteristics and personal experience, respectively. The first level that precedes the development of others includes a set of all properties that reflect the dynamics, course, activity of mental phenomena and individual properties of the constitutional composition. The second level covers personal characteristics: the system of values, orientation, need-and-motivational sphere, attitudes, etc., the third – contains a class of characteristics, caused by the attachment of personality to a variety of social relationships and due to the impact of the real subjective environment, social norms, and cultural traditions on its individuality. The theoretical isolation of individual subsystems is based on the logical and methodological procedure of differentiation, whereas their interaction through adjacent zones is possible on the basis of the integration procedure. Thus, the author’s structure of personality implements the principles and norms of the system approach as a multilevel and polymodal metasystem with components that holistically co-operate with each other. At the same time, a significant heuristic potential of the proposed theoretical model in the study of emotionality as a systemic property of personality is confirmed, which is not limited only to the temperamental level of its development organization (primarily modality and the sign of the dominant emotions), but also purely personal (value-semantic sphere, the peak experiences, the passion in relations with others, the situation’s rhythm of excitement, etc.).


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How to Cite

Sannikova, Olha. “Continuum-Hierarchical Model of Personality”. Psyhology & Society, no. 3-4, Mar. 2019, pp. 166-77,