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Lecture 5

Lecture 5.docx

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PSYC 2600
Elizabeth Nisbet

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Lecture 5 Conceptual Issues - Personality Development - Stability - Change - Coherence What Is Personality Development? - Personality development: Continuities, consistencies, stabilities in people over time, and the way in which people change over time • For example: Temperament  Coherence  Stability & change • But first, let’s define Rank Order & Mean Level Three Key Forms of Stability - Rank order stability: Maintenance of an individual position’s within group - Mean level stability: Constancy of level in population - Personality coherence: Maintaining rank order relative to others but changing in the manifestations of trait Personality Change: Two Defining Qualities - Internal: Changes are internal to a person, not changes in the external surrounding - Enduring: Changes are enduring over time, not temporary Three Levels of Analysis - Population level: Changes or constancies that apply more or less to everyone - Group differences level: Changes or constancies that affect different groups differently - Individual difference level: e.g., Can we predict who is at risk for psychological disturbance later in life based in earlier measures of personality? Personality Stability Over Time - Temperament Stability During Infancy • Temperament: Individual differences that emerge very early in life, are heritable, and involved behaviors are linked with emotionality • As assessed by caregivers, temperament factors include activity level, smiling and laughter, fear, distress to limitations, soothability, and the duration of orienting Personality Stability Over Time: Temperament Stability During Infancy - Research points to the following conclusions • Stable individual differences emerge early in life, where they can be assessed by observers • For most temperament variables, there are moderate levels of stability over time during the first year of life • Stability of temperament is higher over short intervals of time than over long intervals of time • Level of stability of temperament increases as infants mature Table 5.1 (partially) Months 3-6 3-9 3-12 6-9 6-12 9-12 Fear .27 .15 .06 .43 .37 .61 Duration of .36 .35 .11 .62 .34 .36 Orienting Personality Stability Over Time: Childhood - Block & Block Longitudinal Study: Individual differences in activity level • Activity level assessed in two ways: Using actometer and independent assessments of behavior and personality provided by teachers at ages 3, 4, 5, 7, 11 • Stability coefficients: Correlations between same measures obtained at two different points in time (test-retest reliability) • Validity coefficients: Between different measures of the same trait at the same time Table 5.2 ActAge 3 ActAge 4 JudgeAge 3 JudgeAge 4 JudgeAge 7 ActAge 3 .44 (m) .61 .56 .19 ActAge 4 .43 (f) .66 .53 .38 JudgeAge 3 .50 .36 .75 .48 JudgeAge 4 .34 .48 .51 .38 JudgeAge 7 .35 .28 .33 .50 Personality Stability Over Time: Childhood - Stability of childhood aggression • Individual differences in aggression emerge early in life, by three years • Individuals retain rank order stability on aggression over many years • Stability coefficients decline as interval between two times of measurement increases Stability of aggression in males over different time intervals (text p. 136) Personality Stability Over Time:Adulthood - Rank Order Stability in Adulthood • Across different self-report measures, by different investigators, over differing time intervals (3 to 30 years), broad traits (i.e., Big 5) show moderate to high stability • Average correlations across traits, scales, and time +.65 • Stability also found using spouse-report and peer-report • Personality consistency tends to increase in stepwise fashion with increasing age— personality appears to become more and more “set in plaster” with age Personality Stability Over Time:Adulthood - Mean Level Stability inAdulthood • “Big five” personality factors show a consistent mean level stability over time • After 50, very little change in the average level • Small but consistent changes, especially the during 20s  Openness, extraversion, neuroticism decl
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