Textbook Notes (381,164)
CA (168,383)
UTSC (19,323)
Psychology (10,052)
PSYB30H3 (495)
Chapter 4

Chapter 4 Key Terms

6 Pages
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Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYB30H3
Professor
Marc A Fournier

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Chapter 4 – Personality Traits: Fundamental Concepts and Issues
Personality traits refer to individual differences between people in characteristic
thoughts, feelings, and behaviours. Psychologists use trait concepts to account for
consistencies in behaviour from one situation to the next.
Act-frequency: - approach to personality. This view holds that traits are merely language
categories for the organization of discrete behavioural acts. As such, traits do not
influence behaviour per se but rather traits are the behaviours.
Four positions of the nature of traits
Traits are Description
Neurophysiologica
l substrates
Traits are biological patternings in the central nervous system that
causes behaviour to occur and account for the consistencies in
Socioemotional functioning from one situation to the next and over
time
Behavioural
dispositions
Traits are tendencies to act, think or feel in consistent ways that
interact with external influences, such as cultural norms and
situational variables, to influence a persons functioning. Trait
attributions can be used both to describe behaviour summaries and
to suggest causal or generative mechanisms for behaviour
Act frequenciesTraits are descriptive summary categories for behavioural acts. Acts
that have the same functional properties may be grouped together
into families, with some acts being more prototypical or
representative of the general family features than others
Linguistic
categories
Traits are convenient fictions devised by people to categorize and
make sense of the diversity of human behaviour and experience.
Traits do not exist outside the mind of the observer, and therefore
they can have no causal influence. Through social interaction and
discourse, people construct meanings for trait terms
Gordon Allport established personality psychology as a legitimate intellectual
discipline and introduce done of the first modern trait theories traits are major
structural units of personality, and as such, they account for consistency and coherence of
human behaviour. He defined a trait as a neuropsychic structure having the capacity to
render many stimuli functionally equivalent and to initiate and guide equivalent forms of
adaptive and expressive behaviour.
Common trait: dimensions of human functioning upon which many different people are
likely to differ
Personal disposition: is a trait that is especially characteristic of a given individual and is
therefore instrumental for depicting that individual persons uniqueness
www.notesolution.com
Raymond B. Cattell advocated a brand of trait psychology that emphasized rigorous
quantification and statistical analysis in research, with the ultimate goal of improving
scientists ability to predict behaviour personality itself was defined in terms of
behavioural prediction, he defined personality asthat which permits a prediction of what
a person will do in a given situation”
His three-part classification of personality data
L-data: Life data - information derived from observer’s ratings and evaluation of
individuals leading more or less natural lives and evaluation of individuals in natural
settings
Q-data: Questionnaire data - information derived from self-observations and evaluation
of ones own behaviour, feelings, and personality characteristics
T-data: Test data - information derived from observations of behaviour under structured
and controlled conditions, as in the laboratory
Factor analysis: a statistical procedure through which various items (as on a self-report
questionnaire) are correlated with each other to determine the empirical clustering of the
items
Surface traits: term for the many readily observable traits that can be found as
clusterings of related behaviours. Underlying the many surface traits are a smaller number
of source traits
Source traits: Cattells 16 basic factors underlying the many different surface traits that
might be identified
Sixteen-personality factor questionnaire (16 PF): Cattells self-report inventory
designed to measure individual differences in 16 source traits
Specification equation: Cattells approach to behavioural prediction whereby different
trait scores for an individual are plugged into an equation and given differential weights
according to the extent to which each is deemed to be relevant to the particular situation
in which behaviour is to occur
Hans Eysenck employed statistical procedure of factor analysis to reduce the many
possible traits that could be measured in questionnaires to a reasonable number of basic
dimensions. Big three supertraits: extraversion-introversion, neuroticism, and
psychoticism.
Four ancient personality types include Melancholic (introverted and highly neurotic),
Choleric, Phlegmatic, and Sanguine
Lexical hypothesis: stated that personality descriptions can be found most readily by
examining a languages lexicon, or the words contained in a dictionary.
Five-factor model (The Big Five): A conception of personality traits that has become
increasingly accepted in recent years, indicating that traits can be grouped into 5 basic
categories
www.notesolution.com

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Description
Chapter 4 Personality Traits: Fundamental Concepts and Issues Personality traits refer to individual differences between people in characteristic thoughts, feelings, and behaviours. Psychologists use trait concepts to account for consistencies in behaviour from one situation to the next. Act-frequency: - approach to personality. This view holds that traits are merely language categories for the organization of discrete behavioural acts. As such, traits do not influence behaviour per se but rather traits are the behaviours. Four positions of the nature of traits Traits are Description Neurophysiologica Traits are biological patternings in the central nervous system that l substrates causes behaviour to occur and account for the consistencies in Socioemotional functioning from one situation to the next and over time Behavioural Traits are tendencies to act, think or feel in consistent ways that dispositions interact with external influences, such as cultural norms and situational variables, to influence a persons functioning. Trait attributions can be used both to describe behaviour summaries and to suggest causal or generative mechanisms for behaviour Act frequencies Traits are descriptive summary categories for behavioural acts. Acts that have the same functional properties may be grouped together into families, with some acts being more prototypical or representative of the general family features than others Linguistic Traits are convenient fictions devised by people to categorize and categories make sense of the diversity of human behaviour and experience. Traits do not exist outside the mind of the observer, and therefore they can have no causal influence. Through social interaction and discourse, people construct meanings for trait terms Gordon Allport established personality psychology as a legitimate intellectual discipline and introduce done of the first modern trait theories traits are major structural units of personality, and as such, they account for consistency and coherence of human behaviour. He defined a trait as a neuropsychic structure having the capacity to render many stimuli functionally equivalent and to initiate and guide equivalent forms of adaptive and expressive behaviour. Common trait: dimensions of human functioning upon which many different people are likely to differ Personal disposition: is a trait that is especially characteristic of a given individual and is therefore instrumental for depicting that individual persons uniqueness www.notesolution.com
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