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Lecture 12

PSYB30H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 12: Neuroticism, Motivation, Adaptation


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYB30H3
Professor
Marc A Fournier
Lecture
12

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Lecture 12 – Review
PERSONALITY DEFINED
An individual unique variation on the general evolutionary design for human nature, expressed as a
developing pattern of dispositional traits, characteristic adaptations and integrative liefstories
complexity and differentially situated in culture
INTRODUCTION
Components of Scientific Personality Theory
oExplicitly Defined Constructs: construct used to define natural phenomena around the world
oCorrespondence Rules: How variables and construct relate to each other
oTestable hypothesis: must be falsifiable
Desiderata for Scientific Personality Theory
oCoherent: tying theories together
oTestable, Empirically Valid: has evidence to support theory. Theory is useless w/o evidence
oComprehensive: detailed, has many variables, more explanations of what the variables are and
how they relate to each other. Problem: too cumbersome
oParsimonious: simplistic theories, easy to understand, less variables, less explanations
oUseful: application of theory to the real world
oGenerative: produces debate, discussion, controversy
HUMAN EVOLUTION
Evolutionary traits
oVariables: different attributes across population
oHeritable
oSelection: some trait differences help people survive better than those who don’t have that trait.
Those with more suited traits pass onto the next generation more likely (e.g. giraffe situation)
oSpandrels: traits only there b/c it is near by an adaptive trait (by-product)
oRandom Effects: random variation that are neutral to the survival and no adaptive significance
Evolution in Personality
o“Getting Along”  a communal trait – most problems are amongst our own species
o“Getting Ahead”  agentic trait – you want to be the one who has the most resources as well as
high in the hierarchy (0 sum problem b/c if one person wins, other loses)
GENDER, SOCIETY, CULTURE
In childhood, girls tend to play with girls, boys tend to play with boys. In each group, they express
different traits
The Socialization Process

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oFemininity – Nurturance & Cooperation
“Tea Parties”  express caring, helping for each other
Perpetuated by home-maker roles
oMasculinity – Dominance & Competition
“War Games”? Express competition, winning/losing
Perpetuated by wage earner-roles
In the cultural and evolutionary framework, we see agentic/communal themes
PERSONALITY TRAITS
History
oAllport: strongly believed in idiographic ideology
Nomothetic: trait laws that govern all people
Idiographic: trait laws that govern individual
oCattell: founder for factor analysis
Surface traits: superficial/outside traits. For surveys w/ participants, results are only
superficial
Source traits: inner/underlying trait only revealed through factor analysis
Controversy
oSituationists: behavior is function due to situations, not personality – implying there is no
personality
oAggregationists: believe in averaging the averages, building reliable measure
oInteractionists: how behavior changes from one situation to the next
Continuity
oIncreases w/ age  children less stable than adults, old adults more stable than young adults
oDecreases with time interval  if you test a person 7 years from now, there are more changes to
occur b/c more time means more opportunity for you to change
oUse test-retest correlation. As you become older, traits solidify
Heritability
oError = 20%, Genetics = 40%
oEnvironment = 40%
Shared = 5%, Non-Shared = 35% (e.g. birth order)
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