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Chapter 8

PSY100H1 Chapter Notes - Chapter 8: Procedural Knowledge, Autobiographical Memory, Field Dependence

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Chapter 8
Social-cognitive approaches to personality human beings are complex
information-processing systems that operate in social environments
The Psychology of Personal Constructs
George Kelly’s Theory
(Page 304!! COROLLARY)
A person is motivated to predict or anticipate what will happen to him or her
Each of us classifies our world by developing personal constructs characteristic
ways of how things are alike and diff from one another (more like hypotheses to be
tested than like assumed facts)
Every construct is bipolar (dichotomy corollary)
People best understood in their own construct systems
Each person develops their own construct system that contains a number of
constructs organized into a hierarchy (organizational corollary)
Every person’s construct system is unique (individuality corollary)
To know another person’s construct system is to see the world through their
eyes (sociality corollary)
W/in a person’s construct system, particular constructs differ from one
another w/ respect to the range of convenience the extent to which a
given personal constructs is likely to guide a person’s interpretation of
events and the behaviour he or she is likely to show (range corollary)
Some constructs are highly permeable and others aren’t (modulation
o Person with an especially permeable construct system is likely to be
seen by others as very-opened minded
o Complete permeable isn’t good, doesn’t function well
When a person’s constructs are mutually incompatible and contradictory,
then they are more likely to have a difficult time making consistent sense of
the world and anticipating events in an adaptive way (fragmentation
Kelly views anxiety as the recognition that the events w/ which one is confronted lie
outside the range of convenience of one’s construct system
Core role structure the construction a person has of who they are in relation to
significant people, such as parents. Guilt is the perception that one is no longer
living according to one’s personal-construct system
Exploring Personal Constructs: The Rep Test
Role Construct Repertory Test (Rep Test) designed to explore personal
constructs in people’s lives
One version asks you to make a series of comparisons among those who play
important roles in your life
o Compile a Role Title list, similar and contrast
o Each of the parings represents a single construct
o People who use many different kinds of constructs are said to
manifest higher levels of cognitive complexity and tend to view the
world in high differentiated manner
o People who use few different kinds of constructs are viewed has
having a simpler, more global construct system
Cognitive Styles and Personality
Cognitive styles people’s characteristics and typically preferred modes of
processing information
Partly captures in Openness to Experience (O), people high in O tent to
process info in a more nuanced, differentiated, and abstract matter while
those low in O see fewer distinctions and adhere to concrete and clearly
defined categories
Field Independence Dependence
A general dimension of cognitive style ranging from highly analytical and
differentiated processing of information (field-independence) to highly contextual
and global processing (field-dependence)
Tilted chair/room Witkin
o People who use room as the reference for their adjustment.
o Perception and judgment of perpendicularity depend on the “field,” or
o People who bypass the field and make their perception and judgment
according to inner cues
Dimension has two poles
Highly field-independent people
o Process info in an especially analytical and differentiated style
o They rely on internal frames of reference that enable them to act upon
info in a highly independent fashion
Highly field-dependent people employ external frames of reference available
in the field
Base their perceptions on the external context w/in which they occurs
Embedded Figures Test person attempts to find forms hidden in an embedding
Associated w/ greater levels of perceptual and cognitive restructuring
Tend to reshape info from the environment according to internalized plans,
rules, and goals
View info in the nonsocial world in a highly differentiated manner
Predicts the ability to block our irrelevant info and focus attention on central
tasks and stimuli in complex learning situations
Cops of high FI make more accurate judgments under high-stimulation crime
Drawn to careers that require cognitive restructuring and objective analysis
of info, such as careers in science, math, management, mechanics
Men score toward FI
More global and intuitive in processing info about the world
Tend to engage in less cognitive restructuring, accepting info from the
environment in its own contextual terms, rather than employing internal
plans and guidelines for info
Tend to be more interested in humanitarian and social-welfare professions,
such as careers in the ministry, social work, teaching young children, social
sciences, selling and advertising
More senitive to social context
Pay closer attention to interpersonal cues ans social info
Spend more time lookint at people than inanimate objects and make more
eye contact when talking w/ others
Prefer being physically closer to others
Women score toward FD
Integrative Complexity
Integrative complexity the extent to which a person reasons about issues in a
differentiated and integrative manner
Assessed through written material
People high in IC
Make many conceptual distinctions and see many interconnections when
interpreting and making sense of intellectual and social issues
People low in IC
See fewer distinctions and tend to reason about the world in a holistic