PSYC 1200 Lecture 7c
Chapter 12: Personality and the Role of Parents
Personality The consistency in a person’s emotions, thoughts, and behaviours across time and different situations.
Projective Personality Presentation of an ambiguous stimulus and having a person tell a story about it.
Tests e.g. Rorschach Ink-Blot Test, Thematic Apperception Test
Objective Personality Some personality tests exist that are known to be relatively reliable and valid.
Tests A personality test is objective if it has been standardized (i.e. responses are given by many people to be compared to).
It is uncertain that certain traits are particularly central to who a person is.
Raymond B. Cattell & Measured people’s answers to questionnaires, observed their behaviour, obtained family’s descriptions of their past behaviour.
Factor Analysis Used factor analysis to group certain types of behaviours that tend to be consistent in people across time and circumstances (16
factor personality inventory).
Central Aspects of 1. Extroversion vs. Introversion: are you outgoing or shy?
Personality Emerging 2. Neuroticism vs. Emotional Stability: are you anxious or calm; moody or emotionally steady?
from Factor Analysis 3. Agreeablness vs. Antagonism: are you good-natured or irritable; cooperative or hostile?
4. Conscientious vs. Impulsiveness: are you responsible or cannot be depended on? Are you disciplined or do you tend
to “give in to temptation?”
5. Openness vs. Resistant to New Experience: are you adventurous and creative or cautious and unimaginative?
These central five personality traits are found in many countries across the world and tend to be highly stable in people across their
lifetime after age 30. Teenagers and young adults are more neurotic and less agreeable.
People become less extroverted and less open to new experiences as they age.
Determinants of Infants differ in how active they are, their level of crankiness, how social they are, how easy to soothe, their attention span, etc.
Personality Evidence suggests these differences in temperaments are largely genetic and your personality as an adult may depend partly on
your temperament as an infant.
Abe & Izard (1999) proposed evidence that:
The number of positive expressions by 18 month-old infants after reuniting with their mother is associated with higher
agreeableness at age 3.5.
The number of negative expressions by 18 month-old infants after reuniting with their mother is associated with higher
neuroticism and disagreeableness at age 3.5.
Heritability The proportion of differences in a trait caused by genetics.
Identical twins raised in different environments are strikingly similar in personality and this similarity increases with age.
The heritability of the Big Five personality traits is about 0.50.
Environmental The role of parents, peers, and life events.
Influences on Problems with blaming parents:
Personality The personality of adopted children is not at all related to the personality of their adoptive parents.
One’s personality has more to do with life experiences that people don’t share with their parents/siblings.
Parent’s child-raising style fluctuates too much to cause consistent personality traits in children
Child-raising often depends on the child’s personality.
Evidence reveals no relationship between parent’s behaviour and their children’s personality in adulthood (i.e. bad
people sometimes come from good upbringings; good people sometimes come abusive upbringings).
Parents have a moderating effect (Caspi, 2000; McCord, 1992):
Impulsive and aggressive 3 year olds tend to grow up to be impulsive, irrespo