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Chapter 1

Chapter 1 - Introduction.docx

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University of Guelph
PSYC 2740
Stephen Lewis

Chapter 1: Introduction Personality Psychology January 12 2012 Personality – is 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 Intrapsychic, physical, and social environments. Psychological Traits – are characteristics that describe ways in which people are different from each other. Traits describe the average tendencies of a person. (i.e. on average, a high-talkative person starts more conversations than a low-talkative person) - Research on personality traits asks four kinds of questions: 1. How many traits are there? 2. How are the traits organized? (How are certain traits related to others) 3. What are the origins of traits? (Where they come from and how they develop) 4. What are the correlations and consequences of traits? (i.e. Do talkative persons have friends?) Psychological Mechanisms – are like traits, except that the term mechanisms refer more to the process of personality. For example, most psychological mechanisms involve an information-processing activity. Process: Input: is an environmental context (i.e. being invited to a house party on the weekend.) Decision Making: will I go or not go. Output: is the outcome or result of your decision. Within the individual: means that personality is something a person carries with him or herself over time and from one situation to the next. Organized: means that the psychological traits and mechanisms for a given person are not simply a random collection of elements, but they are linked together in a coherent fashion. Enduring: the trait lasts with there person their whole life, might change a little. State-> how your thinking or feeling right now Trait-> how you think or feel most of the time. Influential Forces: personality traits and mechanisms can have an effect on people’s lives. Personality influences how we act, how we view ourselves, how we think about the world, how we interact with others, how we feel, how we select our environments, what goals we pursue in life, and how we react to circumstances. His or Her Interactions With: interactions with situations include: perceptions, selections, evocations, and manipulations. Perceptions: how we see and interpret and environment (i.e. 2 people look at inkblot and see different things) Selection: describes the manner in which we choose situations to enter (i.e. choose friends, hobbies, college classes, and careers. Evocations: are the reactions we produce in others (i.e. a person who is physically large may evoke feelings of intimidation in others) Manipulations: are the ways in which we intentionally attempt to influence others. (i.e. Someone who is anxious or frightened easily may try to influence the group he or she is a part of to avoid scary movies or risky activities. Adaptations: How you cope with or manage certain situations. Environment: Intra psychic -> what is going on in your mind. (motives, urges) Phy
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