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B30 Lecture 1

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Marc A Fournier

Lecture 1 Introduction Part I. Overview of PSYB30—Personality • Can be found in syllabus • Goal is to successfully describe individualistic differences; in terms of socio- economic difference, propensity to engage in hard work… • Concept of Personality Traits o Level I: Sketch of the Individual  General, internal, and comparative dispositions accounting for the consistencies we perceive or expect in behavior across situations and time • Person-Situation Controversy [general] • Heredity-Environment Controversy [environmental influence] • Continuity vs. Change of Traits over Time [stability]  Will be covered in weeks 1, 2, 3 o Level II: Fill in the Details  Adaptations to the motivational, cognitive, and developmental challenges that people confront across the life span • Goals & Strivings [] • The Self & Social Cognition [] • Stages of Life-Span Development []  Will be covered in weeks 4, 5, 6 o Level III: Integrating a Life  Internalized and evolving narratives of the self that integrate past, present, and future to provide life with a sense of unity and purpose • Imagery, Theme, Character [] • Standards of Good Life-Story Form [] • Psychotherapy as Revision of the Life Story []  Will be covered in weeks 7, 8, 9 Part II. Scientific Theories • Constructs, Theories, & Testable Hypotheses o Explicitly defined – CONSTRUCTS  An idea that we use to make sense of the world  Not observable; can be used to  Hallmarks of psychological construct is that behavior is not directly observable  Example: intelligence; we have access to people’s behavior and thereby we can classify them as intelligent or not; used to make sense of people’s behaviour  Explanatory variables we use to explain theories  Theories link constructs; these links are called correspondence rules o Linked by correspondence – RULES  T
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