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Chapter 14

PSYA02 chapter 14 notes part 1

6 pages78 viewsSummer 2011

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John Bassili

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Chapter 14 Personality
-Personality: a particular pattern of behavior and thinking that prevails across time
and situations and differentiates one person from another
-Goal of psychologists who study personality is to discover the causes of individual
differences in behavior
-Research on human personality requires 2 kinds of effort
oIdentifying personality characteristics
oDetermining the variables that produce and control them
-Nominal fallacy is the false belief that causes of an event are explained simply by
naming and identifying them
Trait Theories of Personality
-Psychologists of personality denote a set of personal characteristics that determine
the different ways we act and react in a variety of situations
-Personality Types and Traits
-Hippocrates theory based on common medical beliefs that originated with the
ancient Greeks
oBody was thought to contain 4 humors, or fluids: yellow bile, black bile,
phlegm and blood
oCholeric people excess yellow bile; bad-tempered and irritable
oMelancholic people excess black bile; gloomy and pessimistic temperaments
oPhlegmatic people excess phlegm; sluggish, calm, and unexcitable
oSanguine people excess blood; cheerful and passionate
-Personality types: different categories into which personality characteristics can
be assigned based on factors such as development experiences or physical
-Theorists conceive individual differences in personality as differences in degrees, not
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-Personality trait: enduring personal characteristic that reveals itself in a
particular pattern of behavior in a variety of situations
-Identification of Personality Traits
-Allports Search for Traits
oGordon Allport
oLooked through dictionary and found 18 000 words relating to personality
Eliminated the temporary states and evaluations
oNot all traits have equal influence on their possessors
oCardinal traits characterize a strong unifying influence on a persons
oCentral traits less singular in influences; capture important characteristics
of an individual
oSecondary traits characteristics that have minor influences on consistency
of behavior
-Cattell Sixteen Personality Factors
oIdentified 6 personality factors by surveying
oStarted off by looking at the words from Allport
-Eysenck: Three Factors
oExtroversion: tendency to seek the company of other people, to be
spontaneous, and to engage in conversation and other social behaviors
Introversion: tendency to avoid the company of other people, to be
inhibited and cautious; shyness
oNeuroticism: tendency to be anxious, worried, and full of guilt
Emotional stability: tendency to be relaxed and at peace with
oPsychoticism: tendency to be aggressive, egocentric, and anti-social
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