Research article

Evaluation of the Self on the Big Two and their Facets: Exploring the Model and its Nomological Network



Social evaluation of the self, of others, and of groups rests on two dimensions, also called ‘the Big Two’ (Horizontal: Communion, Warmth; Vertical: Agency, Competence). These Big Two have recently been broken down into two facets each. The Vertical dimension comprises Ability and Assertiveness, the Horizontal dimension Friendliness and Morality (Abele et al., 2008,2016,2021). In three studies, the present paper further explores this dimensions/facets conceptualization. We ask if the facets add explanatory power over and above the dimensions; and we analyze a number of criterion variables not considered before. Participants always had to rate themselves on the dimensions/facets and answered additional measures. These were social desirable responding and item valence. These are interesting from a methodological point of view. Self-efficacy and dominance orientation (vertical facets) and social value orientation (horizontal facets) were of interest with respect to the distinction of the facets. Finally, life satisfaction and self-awareness were analyzed as more remote constructs. Findings supported the dimension/facets model; they supported the construct validity of the Big Two; they supported the construct validity of the facets; and they revealed instances, under which distinguishing between the facets is promising. Further research perspectives regarding targets of evaluation and regarding construct validity particularly of the Horizontal facets are outlined. We summarize that the facet conceptualization is an important extension of the prominent Big Two approach.


Big Twofacetsnomological network
  • Year: 2022
  • Volume: 35 Issue: 1
  • Page/Article: 14
  • DOI: 10.5334/irsp.688
  • Submitted on 1 Feb 2022
  • Accepted on 1 Jul 2022
  • Published on 3 Oct 2022
  • Peer Reviewed