PSYC 2600 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Human Nature

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Week 1: Intro to Personality Psychology
Personality Traits: Characteristics that describe ways in which people are different from each other.
Aeage tedeies, help desie people, help eplai ad pedit hat people’s ehaiou a e.
Trait behaviour example: How talkative are you? Mechanisms: The proves of personality. Input: you saw
ou fied at a us stop if ou’e fiedl. Deisio ules: You sa e I a late ad leae ithout
stopping by to see a friend or actually go up to them. Outputs: leave by saying bye see you later and
do’t go to see a fied. Pesoalit: see as eig ithi the idiidual. It is iside of ou. You
personality impacts our actions, how we behave, how we feel and think.
3 levels of Personality Analysis: Human nature, individual and group differences, individual uniqueness.
Hua atue: Ho ae e like all othe. Lots of diffeet laguages i the old, ut eeoe has a
need to communicate with each other. Traits and mechanisms of personality that are typical of our
species and possessed by nearly everyone. We need to feel the connections. Need to belong. We seek
plaes ad look fo soial oetio to feel that e elog soehee. Whe ou do’t hae that eed
eig filled, its e stessful. Idiidual ad goup diffeees: ho ae e like soe othes.
Individual differences: ways in which each person is like some other people. Group differences: ways in
which the people of one group differ from people in another group (cultural and age differences).
Idiidual uiueess: ho ae e like o othes. Ee idiidual has pesoal ad uiue ualities
not shared by any other person in the world. Even two identical twins are not the same person.
Individuals can be studied nomothetically or ideographically. Grand Theories of personality attempt to
provide universal account of the fundamental psychological processes and characteristics of species and
these theoies ae poed og. The do’t ok aoe eaple “igud Feud’s pshoaalti
theory.
Contemporary Research: Most of personality psychologist specialize in a particular domain of
psychology such as biological aspects of personality or how culture impacts personality. There is a gap
between contemporary and grand theories because psychologists do not cover all domains of complex
personality study.
6 domains of knowledge: dispositional, biological, intrapsychic, cognitive-experiential, social and
cultural, adjustment. Personality research has purposes: it serves as a guide for researches, organizes
known findings, makes predictions about behaviour and psychological phenomena that no one has yet
documented or observed.
Personality theories are evaluated on the basis of: comprehensive (you should be able to read and
understand it), heuristic value, testability (you should be able to test it, otheise ou a’t poe it),
parsimony (as simple as it can be), compatibility and integration across domains and levels (it should be
able to applied to other areas or domains if that theory is good).
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