ISSN 1671-3710
CN 11-4766/R

Advances in Psychological Science ›› 2016, Vol. 24 ›› Issue (2): 228-241.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1042.2016.00228

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Personal need for structure: Concept, measurements and relationships to related variables

LIU Yanli1; LU Guizhi1; LIU Yong2   

  1. (1 Department of Psychology, School of Education, Harbin Normal University, Harbin 150025, China)
    (2 Mental Health Education and Counseling Center, Jiamusi University, Jiamusi 150047, China)
  • Received:2015-04-21 Online:2016-02-15 Published:2016-02-15
  • Contact: LU Guizhi, E-mail:


Personal need for structure is referred to be an individual’ s prefer or need to the simple structure, clarity things and environments, which naturally is a kind of motive and desire, and could be manifested by simplifying complex information or in an order and well-structured cognitive processing way. There are individual differences in the personal need for structure. Individuals with higher personal need for structure scores are especially likely to simplify complex information and environments, understand and structure their worlds in unambiguous, simple representations or descriptions, thus to reduce cognitive resources’ expenditure and consumption, improve the efficiency of cognitive manipulation and maintain internal stability of cognitive and behavioral tendency. This article is to synthesize the current theoretical foundation and conceptual development on the personal need for structure, and introduce two main measurements (PNS-12 scale, PNS-11 scale) and related researches, which are presented according to antecedent variables, consequent variables of the personal need for structure. The future research is proposed to make a thorough inquiry on the concept and structure, improve the research methods, develop more effective measuring tools, explore the mechanisms and conduct the indigenization researches of the personal need for structure.

Key words: personal need for structure, factor structure, theory of lay-epistemology, antecedents, consequences