Neo Personality Inventory: An Overview of the Test and Its Benefits

Blocksurvey blog author
Jul 10, 2023 · 5 mins read

What is NEO Personality Inventory?

The NEO Personality Inventory was created to analyze the Five major traits of personality (Neuroticism, Extraversion, Openness, Conscientiousness, and Agreeableness). Originally the NEO was created as a 3-factor analysis model, but later on, when the Big Five personality traits were introduced by Lew Goldberg, the NEO PI-Revised was created. Costa and McCrae have specified in several publications that the NEO PI-R is merely a measure of their broader Five-Factor Model (FFM) personality.

The NEO PI-R is a concise measure of the Five-Factor Model; it has 6 facets to each of the five major personality domains. Totally, the longer version of NEO PI-R has 240 questions; there is also a shorter form with 60 questions developed later on. The Five-Factor model is a relatively stable dimension we observe throughout the lifespan, with some strong genetic basis. So analyzing these dimensions can throw light on an individual’s emotional stability, job performance, health-risk factors, or even some mental health-related issues.

What does the NEO Personality Inventory measure?

The most recent research has two forms of the NEO test, Form S is a self-report, and Form R is the observer report. Both these versions have 240 questions to take a detailed analysis of the five major dimensions of personality. The items in a NEO questionnaire were measured against a 5 point Likert scale, from “Strongly Disagree” to “Strongly Agree.”

The items in the NEO PI-R are designed to target the five dimensions of personality. So there are 6 facets for each of the dimensions and 8 questions to analyze each facet, so on the whole, it is 240 questions. The NEO FFI-3 is the 60 item questionnaire, which is 2 questions for each of the 6 facets; for the Five dimensions, the same five-point Likert scale is used here also.

The responses of the study were noted, and accordingly, the scores of each dimension are calculated, the strength-based assessment of each domain is given, like, High, Medium, and Low. The level of each dimension has been defined with unique features. For example, an individual with high neuroticism scores will be characterized by impulsivity, emotional instability, anxiety, or depression. In contrast, a low score is characterized by a lack of emotions, self-restraint, failure to foresee a problem.

The NEO PI-R vs Big Five Personality test

The NEO PI-R and Big Five model of personality contain five broad and similarly operationalized factors, but they’re not identical. Costa & McCrae have specified in several publications that the NEO-PI-R is merely a measure of their broader Five-Factor Model (FFM) personality. Emotional Stability (Big Five) and Neuroticism (the NEO) contain similar content but are named in opposite directions. Intellect (Big Five) and Openness (NEO) are not only named differently, but the latter contains relatively little “intellectual” content.

The NEO PI-R validity and Reliability:

Costa& McCrae reported in the NEO manual research findings regarding the convergent and discriminant validity of the inventory. Several studies have been conducted to analyze the criterion validity of the NEO scales; it has been proven that the NEO PI-R has high validity and reliability scores.


A detailed assessment of your personality helps you find your strengths and weaknesses. Even knowing the differences in personality helps employers while recruiting people for a particular job; individual differences play a major role in successfully completing the job. So take up this online test and find out your scores for each dimension of personality.

Also Try FREE Personality Tests: 10+ FREE Personality Test Templates

Neo Personality Inventory: An Overview of the Test and Its Benefits FAQ

Who can take the Neo Personality Inventory Test?

The NEO-PI-R is typically administered to individuals ages 18 and older. It is used to evaluate a wide range of psychological issues, including personality disorders, career counseling, and clinical diagnoses.

How long does it take to complete the Neo Personality Inventory Test?

The NEO-PI-R typically takes 45 minutes to an hour to complete.

What does the Neo Personality Inventory Test measure?

A4. The NEO-PI-R measures five broad domains of personality, including Neuroticism, Extraversion, Openness, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness. It also measures six subdomains under each of the five personality traits.

What is the scoring system of the Neo Personality Inventory Test?

A5. The NEO-PI-R uses a five-point Likert scale to rate an individual’s responses to each item. Scores are then tallied to calculate a total score for each domain, as well as a total score across all five domains.

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Vimala Balamurugan

Vimala heads the Content and SEO Team at BlockSurvey. She is the curator of all the content that BlockSurvey puts out into the public domain. Blogging, music, and exploring new places around is how she spends most of her leisure time.


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