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Birth Order and Locus of Control
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by Brittney L. Beck and Kenneth E. Brown, Jr. - Bastyr University
Categories: Developmental | Personality
Adler (1929, as cited in Ansbacher & Ansbacher, 1956) proposed the idea that birth order contributes to the later development of personality. Rotter (1966) developed the Internal/External (I/E) Control Scale, which measures an individual's locus of control. He found that internally controlled individuals felt more responsible for their life circumstances, whereas externally controlled individuals felt they were controlled by luck or fate (Engler, 1999). Studies have indicated a possible relationship between birth order and locus of control, but the results have been mixed (Walter & Ziegler, 1980). Researchers administered the I/E Control Scale to participants. In addition, demographic information was acquired including birth order. Research findings indicated that individuals occupying the "firstborn" position were not more likely to possess an internal locus of control, as compared to children occupying the position of "laterborn."