Lecture 1- September 11, 2012
What is personality psychology?
Cognitive psychology: science of basic cognitive processes (i.e. memory, attention, perception)
o Research question ex: why do some people have better memories than others?
Neuropsychology: science of connection between brain and the mind (how the brain carry out
Social psychology: science of social influences on psychological processes (i.e. social influence)
o Research question ex: why do people respond differently to rejection by others?
Developmental psychology: science of changes in psychological processes over the life span
(how does aging influence the way we think and behave)
o Research question ex: why are some children more afraid of strangers than others?
Personality psychology differs from the rest because it can vary from one person to another;
recognizes that we are all unique individuals; different methods of research (i.e. more self-
evaluation) ; focus on variations among people that are good/positive
o i.e. extraversion help to build social relationships
o introversion helps people to study and get bored less easily
o Other areas of psychology assume we are all alike (i.e. “people” would do this rather
than “Jane” would do this...)
Abnormal psychology- assumes people differ from each other (thus somewhat similar to