Chapter 11


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Chapter 11

  1. 1. Chapter 11: Personality Theory and Assessment This multimedia product and its content are protected under copyright law. The following are prohibited by law: Any public performance or display, including transmission of any image over a network. Preparation of any derivative work, including the extraction, in whole or in part, of any images. Any rental, lease or lending of the program. Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  2. 2. Chapter 11 Overview  Psychoanalytic theories  Humanistic theories  Trait theories  Social-cognitive theories  Nature, nurture, and personality  Personality assessment Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  3. 3. Psychoanalytic Theories  Psychoanalysis is Freud’s theory of personality and his therapy for treating psychological disorders; focuses on unconscious processes  Personality is a person’s characteristic pattern of behaving, thinking, and feeling Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  4. 4. What are the three levels of awareness in consciousness?  The conscious – All thoughts, feelings, memories of which we are aware at a given moment  The preconscious – Thoughts, feelings, memories that we are not consciously aware of but can easily bring to mind  The unconscious – The primary motivating force of human behavior – Contains repressed memories and instincts, wishes, and desires that have never been conscious Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  5. 5. What are the roles of the id, the ego, and the superego?  Id – Contains life and death instincts – Operates according to the pleasure principle  Ego – The logical, rational part of personality – Operates according to the reality principle  Superego – The moral system of the personality – Consists of the conscience and the ego ideal Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  6. 6. Freud’s Conception of Personality  Ego is largely conscious, but partly unconscious  Superego operates at both the conscious and unconscious levels  Id is completely unconscious Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  7. 7. What is the purpose of defense mechanisms?  The ego uses defense mechanisms to maintain self-esteem and protect itself from anxiety created by conflict between the id and superego – The id’s demands for pleasure often conflict with the superego’s desires for moral perfection  e.g., ego protects itself from unacceptable thoughts and memories through repression – Removing painful thoughts, memories, desires from consciousness and keeping them in the unconscious Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  8. 8. What are the psychosexual stages, and why did Freud consider them important in personality development?  According to Freud, the sex instinct is the most important factor influencing personality  It is present at birth, and then develops through a series of psychosexual stages – Each stage involves an erogenous zone and a conflict – If the conflict is not resolved, the child develops a fixation, and a portion of the libido remains invested at that stage Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  9. 9. What are the psychosexual stages, and why did Freud consider them important in personality development?  Oral stage: Birth to 1 year – Conflict: Weaning – Fixation can lead to dependency and passivity or sarcasm and hostility  Anal stage: 1 to 3 years – Conflict: Toilet training – Fixation can lead to excessive cleanliness and stinginess or messiness and rebelliousness Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  10. 10. What are the psychosexual stages, and why did Freud consider them important in personality development?  Phallic stage: 3 to 5 or 6 years – Conflict: Oedipus complex – Fixation can lead to flirtatiousness and promiscuity or excessive pride and chastity  Latency: 5 or 6 years to puberty – Period of sexual calm  Genital stage: Puberty on – Revival of sexual interests Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  11. 11. How are Freud’s ideas evaluated by modern psychologists?  Freud is credited with making important contributions to psychology – Recognizing the importance of childhood experiences in shaping personality – Identifying the role of defense mechanisms – Calling attention to the unconscious  But critics argue that – People do not typically repress painful memories – Dreams do not have symbolic meaning – Freud’s ideas are difficult to test scientifically Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  12. 12. How do the views of the neo- Freudians differ from those of Freud?  Several theorists built on the strengths of Freud’s theory, and tried to avoid its weaknesses  They are called the neo-Freudians – Carl Jung (1875-1961) – Alfred Adler (1870-1937) – Karen Horney (1885-1952) Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  13. 13. How do the views of the neo- Freudians differ from those of Freud?  In Jung’s theory, the personality has three parts – Ego – Personal unconscious – Collective unconscious  Jung rejected Freud’s ideas – that the sexual instinct is the most important determinant of personality – that personality is mostly formed in childhood Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  14. 14. How do the views of the neo- Freudians differ from those of Freud?  Adler’s theory – The predominant force of the personality is not sexual in nature – The drive to overcome feelings of inferiority motivates most human behavior  When feelings of inferiority prevent personal development, they constitute an inferiority complex Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  15. 15. How do the views of the neo- Freudians differ from those of Freud?  Karen Horney believed that Freud overemphasized the role of sexual instinct – She rejected his psychosexual stages and ideas such as the Oedipus complex and penis envy  She argued that women’s psychological difficulties arise from failure to live up to idealized versions of themselves – To be psychologically healthy, women and men must overcome irrational beliefs about the need for perfection – These ideas can be seen in modern cognitive- behavioral therapy Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  16. 16. Humanistic Theories  In humanistic psychology, people are assumed to have a natural tendency toward growth and the realization of their fullest potential  These theories are more optimistic about human nature than Freud’s theory  But, like Freud’s theory, humanistic theories are difficult to test scientifically Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  17. 17. What are some of the traits of self- actualizers?  Abraham Maslow (1908-1970) proposed a hierarchy of needs that motivates human behavior  The highest need is self-actualization  Self actualizers – Accurately perceive reality and quickly spot dishonesty – Tend not to depend on external authority, but are internally driven, autonomous, and independent – Frequently have peak experiences  Experiences of deep meaning, insight, and harmony within themselves and with the universe Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  18. 18. Why is unconditional positive regard critical to personality?  According to Carl Rogers (1902-1987), our parents set up conditions of worth – Conditions on which their positive regard depends  These conditions force us to live according to someone else’s values  A goal of person-centered therapy is to enable people to live by their own values – And not live by the values of others to gain positive regard – To achieve this, the therapist must give the client unconditional positive regard Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  19. 19. Trait Theories  Attempts to explain personality and differences among people in terms of personal characteristics that are stable across situations Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  20. 20. What were some of the ideas proposed by early trait theorists?  Allport (1897-1967) proposed two kinds of traits – Cardinal traits  Which are so pervasive that almost every act can be traced to their influences – Central traits  The kinds of traits that one would mention in a recommendation letter  Cattell’s(1950) theory – Surface traits are the observable qualities of personality – Source traits underlie surface traits, and cause certain surface traits to cluster together  Cattell identified 23 source traits Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  21. 21. What were some of the ideas proposed by early trait theorists?  Eysenck (1916-1997) proposed that there are three personality factors – Psychoticism  An individual’s link to reality – Extraversion  A dimension ranging from outgoing to shy – Neuroticism  A dimension of emotional stability, from stable to anxious and irritable  These personality factors are rooted in neurological functioning – An idea that has been supported by modern brain-imaging studies Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  22. 22. What do five-factor theorists consider to be the most important dimensions of personality?  The five-factor model is a trait theory that attempts to explain personality using five broad dimensions, each of which is composed of a constellation of personality traits – Openness – Conscientiousness – Extraversion – Agreeableness – Neuroticism Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  23. 23. What do five-factor theorists consider to be the most important dimensions of personality?  Openness – Open to new experiences, curious, and broad minded versus having narrow interests and preferring the familiar  Conscientiousness – Reliable, orderly, and industrious versus undependable and lazy  Extraversion – Outgoing with a preference to be around other people versus shy with a preference to be alone  Agreeableness – Easygoing and friendly versus unfriendly and cold  Neuroticism – Pessimistic and irritable versus optimistic and able to take things in stride Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  24. 24. Social-Cognitive Theories  The view that personality can be defined as a collection of learned behaviors acquired through social interactions Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  25. 25. What is the situation-trait debate about?  An ongoing discussion among theorists about the relative influence of traits and situations on personality  Walter Mischel (1968) proposed that situations dictate personality more than traits  Research suggests that traits are generally stable over time and across situations – Although situations can modify personality traits  e.g., lack of social support can increase neuroticism Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  26. 26. What are the components of Bandura’s reciprocal determinism model?  Bandura proposed that internal, environmental, and behavioral variables interact to influence personality  An important cognitive factor in Bandura’s theory is self-efficacy – A person’s perception of his or her ability to perform competently whatever is attempted Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  27. 27. What does locus of control contribute to personality?  Julian Rotter proposed a personality factor called locus of control  People with an internal locus of control – See themselves as primarily in control of their behavior and its consequences  People with an external locus of control – Perceive that what happens to them is in the hands of fate, luck, or chance Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  28. 28. Nature, Nurture, and Personality  Although all psychologists agree that our genes play at least some roles in personality, most also acknowledge that environmental factors influence how our traits change over time Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  29. 29. What have twin and adoption studies revealed about the influence of genes on personality?  Identical twins are similar on several personality dimensions – Whether raised together or apart  Adoption studies indicate that shared family environment has little influence on personality development  These findings show that heredity strongly influences personality Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  30. 30. How does personality differ across cultures?  Advocates of the five-factor model assert that the factors are universal  But other theorists argue that cultures differ in individualism/collectivism, a dimension of personality – In individualist cultures more emphasis is placed on independence and individual achievement – In collectivist cultures, people emphasize social connectedness and tend to define themselves in terms of group membership Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  31. 31. Personality Assessment  Personality assessment is commonly used in business and industry to aid in hiring decisions  Clinical psychologists, psychiatrists, and counselors use various ways of measuring personality in the diagnosis of patients and in the assessment of progress in therapy Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  32. 32. How do psychologists use observations, interviews, and rating scales?  Assessment methods include – Behavioral assessment  In which behavior is observed and recorded – Structured interviews  In which an interview follows a prescribed procedure  Rating scales provide a standardized format for recording behaviors or interview responses Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  33. 33. What is an inventory, and what are the MMPI-2 and CPI designed to reveal?  An inventory is a paper and pencil test with questions about a person’s thoughts, feelings, and behaviors – Scored according to a standard procedure – Used to measure several dimensions of personality Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  34. 34. What is an inventory, and what are the MMPI-2 and CPI designed to reveal?  The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI-2) is the most widely used personality inventory  Used to screen for and diagnose psychiatric problems and disorders  Includes 550 items that differentiate specific groups of psychiatric patients from people considered to be normal – Also includes validity scales, such as a social desirability scale Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  35. 35. What is an inventory, and what are the MMPI-2 and CPI designed to reveal?  California Personality Inventory (CPI) – Developed to assess personality in normal individuals – Is useful for predicting school achievement, leadership and executive success, and effectiveness of police and military personnel  Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) – Based on Jung’s theory of personality – Measures normal individual differences on four personality dimensions Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  36. 36. How do projective tests provide insight into personality, and what are some of the most commonly used projective tests?  A projective test is a personality test consisting of inkblots, drawings of ambiguous human situations, or incomplete sentences for which there are no correct or incorrect responses  People respond by projecting their inner thoughts, feelings, fears, or conflicts onto the test materials Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  37. 37. How do projective tests provide insight into personality, and what are some of the most commonly used projective tests?  In the Rorschach Inkblot Method the test taker is asked to describe 10 inkblots  According to Rorschach, responses can be used to diagnose disorders  Critics argue that results are too dependent on the judgment of the examiner  In response, Exner (1993) developed the Comprehensive System for scoring Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon
  38. 38. How do projective tests provide insight into personality, and what are some of the most commonly used projective tests?  The Thematic Apperception Test (TAT) was developed by Henry Murray  Test taker describes a series of drawings of ambiguous human situations – Descriptions are thought to reveal inner feelings, conflicts, and motives  Critics argue that – It relies too heavily on interpretation of the examiner – Responses may reflect temporary states and may not indicate more permanent aspects of personality Copyright © 2008 Allyn & Bacon