PSYC 2600 Lecture Notes - Great Depression, Sensation Seeking, Neuroticism

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Published on 14 Oct 2012
School
Carleton University
Department
Psychology
Course
PSYC 2600
Earliest Memories
Think about who you where, were you adventurous toddler? troublemaker teen? Do you feel as if you
were the same person or a completely different person at each stage.
How do these selves reflect who you are today (are you the same or did you change)
Personal changes (bold vs shy), obedient vs rebellious (good but then can turn bad)
Personal stability, even if you changed fro rebellious, you can typically see some stability such as they
were always creative.
Personality Development/Change
Researches prefer to study stability, researchers are biased and favour stability. Stability has positive
connotation, people who are in social sciences or psychology like consistency, inconsistency has a
negative connotation. They really only look at the one side of it, stability suggests true and strong
constructs
When there is personality change it can happen at 3 levels:
Population Level-growth and change for everyone overtime (less aggressive and impulsive over time)
Group Differences-How personality changes within certain groups (gender-dominance, relationships,
values in relationships changes with gender and age); culture (self-esteem changes significantly over
time, autonomy-making own life decisions, value autonomy more, autonomy doesn't get as big of a boost
when you stay at home longer)
Individual differences-Based on traits and attributes we can tell who will change more than others and
what personality traits predict life events (such as introverts vs extroverts rather than gender)
3 concepts: change that is really stability (looks like change but it isn't really):
Rank Order Stability-Keeping your trait relative to others (it may seem like personality is changing
drastically, according to rank order stability it isn't change if it is compared to others, if always above
average, it doesn't matter if it actually changed)
Mean Stability- Individuals can change and rank order can change, but the average across population
remains the same. Some will increase and some will decrease in any given trait, because these can cancel
themselves out the mean average will stay the same. (some people will get families and party less, and
others may come out of their shell and start to party more)
Coherence-The trait can stay stable (it just looks different at different ages), manifestation of a trait
changes over time. (people can be rebellious through different ages, spill juice, then skateboarding and
getting in trouble with law, then just staying out too late). What will people be impulsive about
(something that you have a hard time holding back on), behaviours change, manifestations of personality
change but the personality trait remains the same.
Personality stability is more stable over shorter periods of time because longer periods of time have
more changes, there are a lot of changes more when we are younger vs when we are older.
Personality Change-Sometimes what we think has changed due to personality isn't because of
personality but because of an illness or drug (paranoia, affect, can change mood and how you interact
with others, emotional regulation, and attention to detail). In psychology we tend to look at dramatic
unique cases of change (brain damage, illness and emotional trauma- but it is rare). Typical changes and
growth over time (infancy to childhood, childhood to adolescence, adolescence to emerging adulthood,
emerging adulthood to middle adulthood, middle adulthood to elderhood)
Personality in Infancy
Difficult to measure, we look at temperament which is highly related to personality, and it is biologically
based, and they emerge early in infancy. Nine dimensions of temperament (similar to taxonomies of
personality, more commonly agreed upon)
1. Activity-how active the infant is, are they constantly moving or are they slow, kicking in womb vs
slow turns, hyper vs relaxed.
2. Regularity/rhythmicity: predictable routines (eating, sleeping), if they are stuck to a schedule or if
they are unpredictable
3. Adaptability-How much they will adjust to change (blanket, who wakes them up after nap time, some
are stubborn and some are easy going)
4. Approach and withdrawal-bold vs shyness, someone new who wants to hold the baby, will they act
well or will they act strongly towards it, sometimes new people are okay but new situations are not
5. affect/mood-If you are happy or sad, really smiling or really fussing
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