Personality Chapters 6 and 7


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Personality Chapters 6 and 7

  1. 1. Chapters 6 and 7<br />The Trait Theory<br />
  2. 2. Trait Approach <br />Based on empirical research, mostly correlational<br />The ultimate criterion for the measurement of a personality trait is can it be used to predict behavior?<br />Therefore, the purpose (theory) of the trait approach is:<br /> Identify trait Predict Behavior<br />
  3. 3. Individual Differences<br />There is no zero value for a trait, only a continuum<br />Example: How sociable are you compared to someone else? (no one is zero sociable)<br />Great at measuring how people differ from one another, not so great at assessing commonalities<br />The trait approach assumes that people are their traits…yet people are unpredictable!<br />
  4. 4. Situations <br />Situations are powerful in influencing behavior<br />What is more important for determining what people do, the person or the situation?<br />Look at three things:<br /> 1. Predictability<br /> 2. Statistical significance of results<br /> 3. Personality terms in language<br />
  5. 5. Scientific Use of Personality Tests<br />The many-trait approach<br />The single-trait approach<br />The essential-trait approach<br />
  6. 6. The many-trait approach<br />Long lists of traits intended to cover comprehensively the whole domain of personality<br />Try to find out which of the traits are correlated with behavior…then explain correlates<br />California Q-set: A list of 100 traits in the form of phrases, ex:<br />“Is critical, skeptical, not easily impressed”<br />Raters are then asked to put into either a “highly characteristic” pile or a “not characteristic” pile.<br /> Judge Individual<br /> (I data) (S data)<br />
  7. 7. Another example…<br />Sex Differences in Delay of Gratification<br />Results suggest that there are gender differences as well as gender similarities<br />Also, many aspects of personality remain fairly consistent even after childhood development<br />
  8. 8. Yet more examples…<br />Drug Abuse – tendencies when young compared to teenage use<br />Depression – gender difference when young, depression when young correlates with young adult depression<br />Political Orientation – Compares ages 3-4 to political orientation at 23 years old<br />So…what do the conclusions of these experiments mean and why do we care about this conclusion?<br />
  9. 9. The single-trait Approach<br />Look at the nature, origin and consequences of single traits<br />Research on three traits that are viewed as important:<br />1. Authoritarianism<br />2. Conscientiousness<br />3. Self-Monitoring<br />
  10. 10. Authoritarianism<br />Important because of role in social problems (ex: Nazism)<br />What do we want to know?<br />Differences in people who are authoritarians vs. those who are non-authoritarians<br />Conclusions:<br />Not as broad a construct as title implies<br />Is an individual difference construct<br />An example of how a trait can explain behavior<br />
  11. 11. Conscientiousness<br />All occupational groups<br />No racial or ethnic differences<br />The “motivation variable”<br />Questions: Is there a relationship between your score on conscientiousness and your behavior? (Take Conscientiousness Scale in your textbook to find out!)<br />
  12. 12. Self-Monitoring<br />Studied for a more philosophical reason<br />Relations between inner and outer selves<br />High vs. low self-monitors<br />Question: Again, is this trait a good predictor of behavior?<br />
  13. 13. Essentail Trait Approach<br />Funder 100<br />Murray 20<br />Cattell 16<br />Eysenck 3<br />Block 2<br /><ul><li>Robert McCrae and Paul Costa (1987)</li></ul> The Big Five:<br />Extraversion<br />Agreeableness<br />Conscientiousness<br />Neuroticism<br />Openness to Experience<br />
  14. 14. Typological Approach<br />Look for basic “types” of people that characterize the whole range of their personalities<br />Three basic types:<br />Well-adjusted<br />Maladjusted overcontrolled<br />Maladjusted undercontrolled<br />
  15. 15. Human Development<br />Where does personality come from?<br />Stable vs. change over the lifespan<br />Individual differences are highly stable across the lifespan<br />Some traits show big changes over the lifespan; social dominance, agreeableness, conscientiousness and emotional stability<br />
  16. 16. Questions to ponder…<br />What are the most consistent aspects of the people you know? What are the most inconsistent aspects?<br />Have you ever been in a situation in which you acted differently than you would normally? Why did this happen?<br />Ask your parents (or someone in that cohort) what is more important; the person or the situation in determining behavior? Then ask someone from your age group the same question. Are the answers the same or different? Why do you think that is?<br />
  17. 17. More Questions to ponder…<br />Which approach do you find the most helpful in understanding personality? Why?<br />Have you ever observed a change in someone’s personality? What do you think caused the change?<br />What about your own personality, is it changing now? Why?<br />