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Chapter 13

Textbook notes for chapter 13 of Psychological Science

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Ashley Waggoner Denton

The study of personality: - Personality = characteristic thoughts, emotional responses, and behaviors that are relatively stable in an individual over time and across circumstances (584) - Personality trait = a dispositional tendency to act in a certain way over time and across circumstances (584) - GordonAllport published the first major textbook of personality psychology (585) - Psychodynamic theory = Freudian theory that unconscious forces like wishes and motives influence behavior (585) - Freud believed that most conflict occurs in the unconscious, which is where information cannot be easily retrieved (585) - Pre-conscious = content that isn’t currently in awareness but can be brought to awareness (585) - Psychosexual stage = developmental stages that correspond to the pursuit of satisfaction of libidinal urges (586) - Humanistic approaches emphasize personal experience and belief systems, proposing that people seek personal growth to fulfill their human potential (587) - Humanism focusses on phenomenology, self-actualization, and the inherent good in all people (587) - Carl Rogers encouraged parents to love their children unconditionally so they could retain their hopes, feelings, and desires rather than abandoning them to achieve parental support (588) - Personality types = discrete categories based on global personality characteristics, and we put people in those categories, ex. shy or outgoing (589) - We make predictions about people based on these categories, ex. the introvert likes books (589) - Trait approach = focusses on the extent to which individuals differ in personality dispositions (589) - Hans Eysenck proposed a hierarchical model of personality (590) - Specific response level = observed behaviors (590) - Habitual response level = repeated behaviors on different occasions (590) - Trait = repeated behaviors on many occasions (590) - Superordinate traits = introversion/extroversion, emotional stability, psychoticism (590) - Emotional stability – the extent to which people’s moods and emotions change (590) - Neurotic people experience frequent and dramatic mood swings compared to people who are more stable (590) - Psychoticism = aggression, impulsive control, and empathy measure (590) - Five factor theory = personality can be described by openness to experience, conscientiousness, agreeableness, and neuroticism (590) - The big five emerge cross culturally and people’s scores have been shown to predict a variety of behaviors (591) - Behaviorism views personality as learned responses to patterns of reinforcement (591) - People have cognitive theories (personal constructs) about how the world works based on their experiences and amend those theories based on their observations (592) - Behavior is a function of people’s expectation of reinforcement and the values they ascribe to particular reinforcers (592) - Some people believe they have the control to bring about rewards while others believe that such control lies in external factors (592) - Humans possess personal beliefs, expectations, and thoughts that interact with the environment and shape behavior (592) - Behaviorism posits that personality traits often fail to predict behavior; instead, people’s responses are influenced by how they perceive a situation, their emotion response to it, their skills in dealing with challenges, and their anticipation of the outcomes of their behavior (592) How personality is assessed and what it predicts: - Allport divided the study of personality into idiographic approaches and nomothetic approaches (594) - Idiographic approaches = person centered; focusses on individual lives and how characteristics are integrated into unique persons (594) - Nomothetic approaches = focusses on how people vary across common traits (594) - Idiographic approaches assume that everyone is unique in the traits that are most central to their personalities (594) - Researchers who use idiographic approaches often use case studies or consider human lives as narratives (594) - To make sense of things, each person weaves a life story that integrates self-knowledge into a cohesive goal and constructs a personal myth about who they are and how they became who they are (594) - Nomothetic approaches focus on common traits like agreeableness and have people rate how agreeable/disagreeable they are on a scale (594) - Projective measures = personality tests that examine unconscious processes by having people interpret ambiguous stimuli (595) - Objective measures = direct measures of personality, usually based on self-report questionnaires or observer ratings (595) - There is a disconnect between how people observe themselves and how they behave, which is why friends’reports of personality traits are more likely to be accurate than self- reports (596) - Situationism = behavior is determined more by situation than personality traits, ex. I might be shy with new people but outgoing with family (596) - People tend to be more consistent in their central traits than in their secondary traits (596) - Strong situations like job interviews or funerals are more predictive of behavior than personality, but weak situations like parks or parties are less predictive of behavior than personality (597) - Interactionists = theorists who believe behavior is determined jointly by underlying dispositions and situations (598) - Big five personality traits exist across all cultures, but people from EastAsia generally rate themselves lower on extroversion, agreeableness, and conscientiousness and higher on neuroticism, and people fromAfrica generally rate themselves higher on agreeableness and conscientiousness and lower on neuroticism, although these ratings may simply reflect cultural measures of the quantities of these traits (598) - Men and women’s self-reports tend to correspond to stereo
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