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Chapter 12

Chapter 12.pdf

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Steve Joordens

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Chapter 12 : Personality 12.1 Contemporary approaches to personality  Personality is a characteristic pattern of thinking, interacting, and reacting that is unique to each individual, and remains relatively consistent over time and situation.  Idiographic approach, meaning that they focus on creating detailed descriptions of individuals and their unique personality characteristics.  What makes the idiographic approach distinct is that is it person centered, and might include how an individual perceives his or her own personality, as well as how others perceive that individual’s personality.  Nomothetic approach, which examines personality in large groups of people, with the aim of making generalizations about personality structure.  One advantage is that it allows psychologists to ask questions about the genetic and cultural basis of personality traits. The Trait Perspective  Personality traits, which are labels applied to specific attributes of personality such as “shy,” “cheerful,” “outgoing,” and “adventurous.”  Factor analysis reveals statistical similarities among a wide variety of items.  The factors derived from this analysis comprise broad personality trait labels, such as extra-version, that psychologists use when measuring personality.  18,000 words to describe an individual’s physical and psychological attributes. The five factor model.  Narrowed the 18,000 to 16 words.  Five factor model (or just the big five personality factors) which is a trait-based approach to personality measurement that includes extraversion, emotional stability (also referred to by the opposite quality, neuroticism), conscientiousness, agreeableness, and openness.  Extraverted people tend to report happier moods than do introverts  Temperament refers to personality-like attributes that appear to be present at birth, and includes such characteristics as activity levelm mood, attention span.  State is a temporary physical or psychological engagement that influences behaviour.  4 general aspects of situations and reduced them to influence our behaviour: - Locations (eg., being at work, school, or home) - Associations (eg., being with friends, alone, or with family) - Activities (eg., awake, rushed, studying) - Subjective states (eg., mad, sick, drunk , happy)  Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI-2), a multiple-question personality inventory that is used to characterize both normal personality dimensions and profiles that fit various psychological disorders.  Schizophrenia and psyhopathic deviancy are included in the MMPI.  The main purpose of the MMPI is to discriminate between “normal” and “abnormal” characteristics.  Two additional methods for measuring personality include interviews and behavioural assessments.  When using interviews, a psychologist asks a structured set of questions and analyzes the responses to create an individual profile.  When using behavioural assessments, a psychologist will create a personality profile by observing an individual in a specific context or situation.  Fourth method includes projective tests. Behaviorist and Social Cognitive perspectives.  The fundamental difference between Bandura’s theory and a strict behaviorist approach is that Bandura sees people as actively shaping and determining their environments, rather than the other way.  Reciprocal determinism - the idea that behavior, internal (personal factors, and external factors interact to determine one another, and that our personalities are based on interactions among these three aspects. 12.2 Cultural and Biological Approaches to Personality  The study of personality is the study of human nature. Culture and personality  One major challenge to doing cross cultural work is finding a standardized measure of personality that can be translated and administered in languages other than english.  Individualism refers to the view that personal identity, goals, and attributes are of greater value than group identity, goals, and attributes.  Collectivism is a view that places greater value on defining the self in terms of group membership and goals. How Genes affect personality
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