PSYC 2130 Lecture 5
According to the Bem measurement
If the person is low in Masculinity and high in femininity Feminine
If the person is high in masculinity and low in femininity masculine
If the person in low in both un-differential
If the person is high in both androgynous
1. Historical Overview
It have been around the time since the ancient Greek
2. Early Typologies
Kretschmer’s Somatotype Theory
3. Trait Approacheswhatever the based assumption about trait approach is that it is temporal
stability. Another assumption is that traits are situational stability. Trait vary according to the
number of traits considered to be basic, where those traits come from, and the type of data they
generate – don’t share a common methodology. Type approach was shift to the trait approach.
It’s easy to be seduced into thinking that traits are measurable. The most conservative way to
think of traits is that they are still theoretical concepts that describe a basic dimension of
personality. BIG 5 are the best-known trait test; it came from lexical analysis – came from the
anaylsis people used to discribe other people. Two theories that are true able personality is they
are stable over time and stable across situations. The traits battle persisted for 35 years. In
clinical psychology trait measures are used all the time.
Differences in taxonomy
o There are many tests out there today which measure personality it is just up to you
on which you want to use.
Differences in ideas concerning origins
o There are biological trait theories
o Some of them give greater weight to environmental traits
Differences in type of data generated
o Some theorist use self report tests
o Some give way to case histories.
4. Main Assumptions of trait theories
Temporal and situational stability
5. Criticisms of the Trait Approach
Trait theories are always used in clinical psychology and they don’t see it.
It was spearheaded by Mischel who was the first to
o He say whene you take a test like the MMPI, the psychologist who interrupts the
test, that scores represent how much of that thing you are.
o Sign vs. samples The responses on the personality tests are interpreted as signs as that is
how that person is, he said instead of personality assessment being based
on sign they should rather be based on samples.
o Much of his attack on the trait perspective is that traits do not allow us to predict
what someone will do later on accurately.
o He argues that personality tests are used in a way that influences peoples life.
o Traits are mythical to him 2
o He gave us the concept of P personality coefficient r= .03 describes the
average relationship on how people response on trait measures and in real life.
o His argument was if the situation more important than the person than there is any
trait assessments that can measure personality.
Skinner he said the trait approach is vulnerable to logical error. Trait approach just
describes the behaviour and does not give a explanation, which leads people to believe
that the description of behaviour in the explanation.
Fundamental flaw in trait approach because we
6. Gordon Allporthis research was the first to have his work in the 1920s recognized. He is
usually credited for doing the ground breaking research of personality traits. He taught the first
course on personality. He is important to people who want to study individual difference. He did
his distoratation on personality at Harvard. He knew a great deal of learning/behaviourism theory
because Skinner was also at Harvard the same time he was there. He said the both
psychoanalysis and behaviourism is very reductionistic; he walked away from this because he
though both were very limited. He also found Freudianism as being reductionistic as well
because Freud break the person into compartments. Personality is the dynamic organization of
psychophysical system that controls systems and thoughts his definition. He was trying to say
the personality is a combination of bother the mind on body and not two separate things, they
play a causal role. Trait psychology should pay more attention to conscious self reports.
Nomothetic vs. idiographic methods
o Nomothetic group data
Your always looking at your subject in the context as a sample
o He rather than forcing all your subjects into categories that are meaningful to you,
there is also value in the idiographic approach which identifying the unique
The person identifies the personality traits and not the researcher and they
should value what people have to say about themselves and to take the
information they provide to face value.
He illustrated the personal