PSYC 2740 Lecture Notes - Lecture 4: Differential Psychology, Barnum Effect, Extraversion And Introversion

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16 Nov 2017
Department
Course
Professor
Personality January 24th
Theoretical & Measurements Issues in Trait Psychology
Theoretical Issues
1. Meaningful individual’s differences (traits help us identify, differential psychology,
no two personalities exactly identical, so much variability, so few traits, subtraits,
different scores)
2. Stability over time
3. Consistency across situations
Stability Over Time
Traits are consistent overt time
But, manifestation of trait may vary
How it looks across time may differ, but same personality (i.e., child playing
alone, vs adult not going out)
How Is There Consistency If a Trait is Known to Change With Age?
Rank order
o With change in a given trait, a relative difference remains between
individuals
o Those higher at time one likely stay high maintain rank order over time
o Consistency across time in rank order
Consistency Across Situations
Trait
Situation (situationalism)
Situation X trait
Trait: people do things because of certain traits
Situation: where people find themselves in, to decide what they do; the context
o Context that contributes to behaviour, not the trait
Behaviour
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Different types of trait/situation interaction
o Interaction between the two
Person-Situation Interactions strong situation almost all people react similarly
o tend to yield the same behaviour from all people (e.g., exam; everyone is
quiet)
situational specificity specific reaction to specific situation
o people who are normally laid back but in certain contexts they might have
anxiety (on a date)
Selection: choose to be in certain settings
Evocation: how people interact with you may evoke a response in you (e.g., you
may become intimidated or you make lash out)
Manipulation: at a trait level some people are more manipulative than others
o Some traits have manipulation tactics (e.g., silent treatment)
Consistency Across Situations: Aggregation
Measurement Issues
Carelessness
Faking on questionnaires
Response set* (*discussed in lecture 2)
Barnum statements
Carelessness
Detected via
People who take part in research study might not care
o They might want credit in something
People might make honest mistakes on things
Infrequency scales
Duplicate questions
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