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Chapter 1

Personality chapter 1.docx

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PSYC 2600
Elizabeth Nisbet

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Book notes chapter 1 PersonalityPersonality the set of psychological traits and mechanisms within the individual that are organized and relatively enduring and that influence his or her interactions with and adaptations to the environmentincluding the intrapsychic physical and social environmentsPsychological traits characteristics that describe ways in which people are unique or different from or similar to each otherSaying someone is shy mentions one way they differ from othersBut in similarity saying people who are shy are similar to each other in that they are anxious in social situationsSomeone who is described as talkative can be talkative most of the time but can certainly have quiet days and such Over time those with the trait of talkativeness tend to emit verbal behavior with greater frequency than those who are low in talkativeness In this sense traits describe the average tendencies of a personAverage tendencies tendency to display a certain psychological trait with regularity For example on average a hightalkative person will start more conversations than a lowtalkative person This idea explains why the principle of aggression works when measuring personality Research on personality questionsResearch on personality traits ask 4 main kinds of questionsHow many traits are thereHow many fundamental traits are there Dozens Hundreds A fewHow are the traits organizedEx how is talkativeness related to other traits such as impulsivity and extraversionWhat are the origins of traitsWhere are they from and how do they develop Does heritability influence talkativeness What are the correlations and consequences of traitsDo talkative people have many friends Do they have a more extended social network to draw upon in times of trouble Do they annoy people who are trying to study Usefulness of personality traitsThey help describe people and help understand the dimensions of difference between people
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