PS271 Lecture Notes - Extraversion And Introversion, Neuroticism, Impulsivity

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15 Apr 2014
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The Trait Approach:
oBased on empirical research
oFocuses on correlational research
oStrength: tries to understand how people differ
oWeakness: tends to neglect aspects of personality that are common to everyone
The Stability of Traits:
oSituational factors: a person may be quiet in some situations and loud in another
oTrait stability increases with age (people become more consistent as they get
older)
oTrait stability is related to psychological adjustment (but within reason, it is not
well adjusted to be rigid)
oPerceptions of those who behave consistently (we tend to think of these people as
less neurotic, more controlled, more social and easier to be around)
Beginnings of the Modern Trait Approach- Carl Jung:
oTypology: small number of types, each person fits on type best
o8 types (4 functions x 2 attitudes)
oFunctions:
Sensing: careful, lives in present, factual, realistic, look at details
Thinking: logical, analytical, not concerned with peoples feelings
Feeling: alogical, warm, concerned with ethics and social justice, concerned
with individuality and peoples feelings
Intuiting: risk taker, concerned with whole picture, holistic thinker, generalist,
idealistic, interested with the hypothetical
oAttitudes: extroversion (get their energy from outside of themselves, if they do
not get a lot of new experiences form the outside, they are bored and under
stimulated), introversion (get their energy from within, easily over stimulated)
oMyers-briggs type indicator: personality test used in the workplace, used to come
up with the different combinations of character types (no allowance for variability
within the results)
Raymond B. Cattell:
oUsed and refined factor analysis (data drive, not theory driven meaning he looked
at data and his ideas came from that data)
oTook a list of traits and narrowed them down to 16 (looked at intercorrelation of
traits and which go together and which are separate)
Outgoing-reserved
More-less intelligent
Stable-emotional
Assertive-humble
Happy go lucky-reserved
Conscientious-expedient
Venturesome-shy
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Tender minded-tough minded
Suspicious-trusting
Imaginative-practical
Shrewd-forthright
Apprehensive-placid
Experimenting-conservative
Self-sufficient-group tied
Controlled-casual
Tense-relaxed
oCollected many different types of data:
Q-data: questionnaires, self report data
T-data: created test situations and saw how people responded
L-data: life data, got information about peoples lives (school records, club
membership)
Gordon Allport:
oReaction to Freud (said to Freud he saw a very careful and neat boy on the way to
meet him and Freud looked at him and said was that boy you and Allport felt
disappointed and felt that Freud was overlooking the obvious and missed what
was in front of him)
oPersonality: the dynamic organization within the individual of those
psychophysical systems that determine his characteristic behaviour and thought
oConcerned with surface level aspects of personality
oScoured English dictionaries for personality/trait adjectives (came across
thousands of words and worked to reduce the ones that had the same meaning and
to come up with terms to describe people in unique ways)
oWrote a book about prejudice (found out what the Nazis were doing before most
people heard about it and he was very alarmed)
oWas interested in cultural influences on personality
oRegularities in behaviour arise because traits are internal structure that make
many stimuli functionally equivalent and traits guide equivalent forms of adaptive
and expressive behaviour
oIndividuals view situations in the same way and they behave and respond to those
(functionally equivalent)
oCommon traits: due to biological heritage and shared culture, there are some
common traits
oPersonal dispositions:
Goals, motives, or styles
Cardinal dispositions: ruling passions (not everyone has these dispositions),
someone who thinks very passionately about one way and that is the one
characteristic that you think of when you think of that person
Central dispositions: important personality characteristics (everyone has them)
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