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PSYB30H3 (485)
Chapter 4

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Marc A Fournier

Chapter 4Personality Traits Fundamental Concepts and IssuesThe Idea of TraitWhat is a TraitRooted In common sense and everyday observation How do you consider personality traitsTraits are internal dispositions that are relatively stable over time and across situationsTraits are conceived in bipolar termsie friendliness form extreme low to highDifferent traits are seen as additive and independentMix together ingredientstraits to make a personalityTraits refer to broad individual differences in socioemotional functioningPersonality traits refer to individ Difference bw people in characteristic thoughts feelings and behaviourssee consistencies in behaviour form 1 situation to anotherst 1 position is that traits exist in NS 0 neuropsychic structure nd 2 position Keep options open but states that traits exist as disposition that exert a significant impact on behaviour rdth 3 and 4 positions argue that traits do not really cause behaviours but are convenient categories for describing the behaviours that people show rd 3Buss and Craik in actfrequencyapproach to personalityTraits are language categories for organization fo discrete behavioural acts and dont influence behaviour th 4Traits do not exist in any objective sensethey are convenient fictions that people invent in order to understand social life TABLE 41 4 POSITIONS OF NATURE OF TRAITS110Each position highlights important idea of traits st1 1Traits have biological merit nd2 2Dispositional nature of traitsrd3 3Traits connect to functionally similar behaviours th4 4Contracts one another in many waysA Brief History of Traits st Personality traits found in ancient textsGenesis Theophratus generates 1 trait taxonomies in Western civilization Greek physician Galen and 4 humours blood black bile yellow bile phlegm Immaneul Kant Wilhelm Eundt Hans Eysenck Bodily forms of Galen revived by Ernst Kretchmer and William Sheldonconstitutional psychology endomorphs ectomorphs mesomorphs show certain things st 1 scientific study of traitsFrancis Faltonfocus on empirical attention on indidivual differencesGordon Allport st 1 book Personality A Psychological Interpretationits a legitimate intellectual disciplineTraits are major structural units of personality and account for consistency and coherence of human behaviour Common Trait Dimensions of human functioning upon which many different people are likely to differPersonal disposition Trait that is especially characteristic of given individual that depicts the persons uniquenessCan be broken down to different varieties 1 CardinalVery general and pervasive to give personpretty much makes up the persons activitiespersonality 2 CentralUsually 510 Wide range of dispositions that are characteristic to given person 3 SecondaryMore limited in scope less critical to description of overall personalityAllport rejected the idea that traits were semantic categories in the minds of observers as opposed to causal agents the crossconsistency of traits the limitation in descriptive and explanatory power of common trait profiles wheres the taxonomy
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