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PSY 325 Unit 4 Study Guide

by: Lauren Toomey

PSY 325 Unit 4 Study Guide PSY 325

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Lauren Toomey

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This study guide answers the questions that were posted on canvas for chapters 12 and 13 (Dr. Gingerich removed chapter 14 from this exam).
Psychology of Personality
Karla Gingerich
Study Guide
psy, 325, Psychology, personality
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This 8 page Study Guide was uploaded by Lauren Toomey on Tuesday April 19, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to PSY 325 at Colorado State University taught by Karla Gingerich in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 98 views. For similar materials see Psychology of Personality in Psychlogy at Colorado State University.

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Date Created: 04/19/16
Study Questions for the Textbook: Unit 4 Gingerich PSY325 Spring 2016 Chapter 12 1. Why do humanistic psychologists believe phenomenology “is more important than the world itself?” What are the important elements of humanistic psychology? (See Table 12.1. You don’t need to memorize the list, but do get a feel for these ideas.) • From a phenomenological viewpoint, the only place and time in which you exist is in your consciousness, right there, right now • A broader reality might exist, but only the part of it that you perceive—or invent—matters or ever will matter to you • You are here now and can choose what to think, feel, and do (don’t care about the past or future) • Humanistic psychology: the study of humans and how people perceive, understand, and experience reality 2. What do humanistic psychologists believe about free will? How is this related to construals? • They believe that the past doesn’t matter, future isn’t here yet, only the present matters, and that you have the power to choose what you think, feel, and do • This realization of the present experience is the basis of free will • Your particular experience of the world is what is called the construal • Forms the basis for how you live your life, different from everyone else’s • How you live your lifeà the experiences you choose and the opportunities you perceive; thus, construals are the foundation of free will 3. What you do think about Sarte’s ideas about angst – what it is, why we have it, and what we can do about it? How do we avoid “living in bad faith?” What is “authentic existence?” • Failure to answer the questions “Why am I here?” and “What should I be doing?” can lead to an intense amount of anxiety about the meaning of life • May begin to feel as if you’re wasting your life • The unpleasant feelings caused by contemplating these concerns is called existential anxiety, or angst • Bad faith: leading the unexamined life; doing what you are told by society and everyone else, and not living it to its fullest and individually • Avoid it by not wasting periods of luck, or of the awareness of luck (because they are brief) • As long as you are alive and aware, you must experience as much of the world as possible, as vividly as possible • Don’t choose the material path • Authentic existence: awareness that you are mortal, your life is short, and you are a master of your own destiny 4. Funder comments that from the perspective of Eastern religions, the Western existentialist view “has everything backwards.” Explain that, as well as what is meant by enlightenment in Buddhism. Do you agree with Funder when he says, “these ideas are difficult to grasp, especially for persons raised in Western cultures” on page 433? • Key idea of Buddhism: annatta, or “nonself” the idea that the independent, singular self you experience in your mind is merely an illusion Page 2 • There is no changing soul at the center of all this, just a momentary coming together of all these influences that is gone within a moment, to be replaced by another • They teach that having a separate and independent self is harmful • I agree that these concepts are difficult for westerners to grasp, because we have never experienced a viewpoint like this, especially with our lack of religious education outside of our own western religions 5. Is there anything about “optimistic humanism” that sounds like traditional existentialism or the Eastern perspective described earlier? What are some of Rogers’ and Maslows’ key ideas? And what would you say are the primary differences between humanism and Freud’s psychoanalytic perspective? • The Eastern alternative harps on individual isolation, mortality, and the difficulty of finding meaning in life • Existentialism begins with the experience of a single individual at a single moment in time; all else is illusion • Maslow and Rogers began with the standard existential assumptions that phenomenology is central and that people have fee will, and then added a crucial idea: that people are basically good • People seek to relate closely with one another, and have an innate need to improve themselves and the world • Rogers: Self-actualization • The organism (any person) has one basic tendency—to actualize, maintain, and enhance itself • Maslow: Hierarchy of Needs • Differences between humanism and Freud: • Rogers believed if you perceive the world accurately and take responsibility for your choices, then you are a fully functioning person who lives what the existentialists would call an authentic existence (except this fully functioning person is happy) 1. Believed you need Unconditional positive regard to achieve this (i.e. no problems from childhood) • Maslow believed that anybody from any background could become a fully functioning person; but if you feel that people value you only if you’re smart, successful, etc., then you will develop conditions of worth • The goal of humanistic psychotherapy is to help the client become a fully functioning person, whereas Freud focused on the person’s bad experiences (and Rogers provided UPR) 6. What was Maslow’s twist on Rogers’ idea about self-actualization? Describe how Maslow’s theory has been applied, and come up with an application of your own. Also, how and why did Kenrick modify Maslow’s hierarchy? • Maslow began with the same assumption of self-actualization as Rogers did, however, Maslow claimed that this motive becomes active only if the person’s more basic needs are met first Page 3 • Thus, the Hierarchy of needs was developed • This idea has been applied in areas such as career choice and employee motivation • Kenrick modified his 70-year-old theory for evolutionary psychology • He added the ultimate goal of the human species (human reproduction) to the top labeled as “parenting” • Achieving this ultimate goal is the same process as Maslow stated 7. Do you know anyone who is a fully functioning person, as described by Rogers? Is he or she free of conditions of worth? • See question 5 for these definitions 8. What are the basics of humanistic psychotherapy? • The goal: to help the client become a fully functioning person • Therapist’s job: to (1) help the client perceive his own thoughts and feelings without the therapist seeking to change them in any way and (2) to make the client feel appreciated no matter what he thinks, says, or does 9. Regarding Kelly’s theory, what are some of your chronically accessible constructs? Explain Kelly’s ideas that “every person is a scientist” (p. 440) and that “actions that appear incomprehensible or even evil can make sense… if you can see them from the point of view of the person who chose them” (p. 441). • Definition: particular constructs that are more readily brought to mind in certain individuals • For ex: the idea of devastating failure might be chronically accessible to one person, so that in everything they do, it is in their mind and affects how they operate • Everyone is a scientist: someone who obtains data and devises a theory to explain the data • There can be many theories to any set of data, therefore, the scientist always chooses which theory to use • The data you use to develop an interpretation, or theory of what the word is like comes from the sum of your experiences and perceptions 10. What did Kelly think was the therapist’s role in therapy? • He believed the primary duty of a psychotherapist is to lead the client to self- understanding, and he designed the Rep test as a tool to help psychotherapists do that (p. 441) 11. Do you spend time in flow? Does the activity you’re thinking of meet Csikszentmihalyi’s definition (skill match, challenge, etc.)? Do you agree that this is “a decent prescription for happiness?” • Flow: the subjective experience of an autotelic (those that are enjoyable for their own sake) activity—the enjoyment itself is called flow • This is a good prescription for happiness—because it is something you enjoy for the sheer joy of the activity 12. What are Deci and Ryan’s ideas about what leads to happiness, and what doesn’t? Which life goals lead to less depression, anxiety, and illness? • Happiness can be sought by two routes: Page 4 • 1. Maximize pleasure and minimize pain (called Hedonia) • 2. Seeking a deeper meaning to life by pursing important goals, building relationships, being aware, and taking responsibility for one’s choices in life (called Eudaimonia—more complex route) • People who emphasized the intrinsic goals in life over the extrinsic goals were higher in vitality and positive emotionality, and lower in depression, negative emotions, anxiety, and signs of physical illness 13. Explain positive psychology to someone who has never heard of it. What are its central ideas? What are the core virtues compiled by researchers, and how did they decide on those six? What research might we expect from positive psychology in the future? • Positive psychology is the rebirth of humanistic psychology • Positive psychologists investigate the traits, processes, an social institutions that promote a happy and meaningful life and have found that most people do not find their lives meaningful 14. How can we understand other people, if at all? • An implication of humanistic psychology is that to understand another person, you must understand that person’s construals • You can only comprehend someone’s mind to the extent that you can imagine life from their perspective (p. 450) Chapter 13 1. What are some of the latest debates related to culture and psychology? a. Individuals may differ from each other to some extent because they belong to different cultural groups b. Members of some groups may differ from each other in distinctive ways c. An important challenge for personality psych is to understand ways that particular personality differences vary from one culture to another, or distinguish among individuals within different cultures 2. How is enculturation distinguished from acculturation in this text? Are differences between cultural groups innate, or learned? a. Enculturation: differences between cultural groups are almost entirely learned, not innate i. Ex: a child picks up the culture into which she is born b. Acculturation: a person moves from one country to another may gradually pick up the culture of her new home 3. Is more cross-cultural personality research needed? Why? a. Most psychologists try not to worry about cross-cultural applications at every step, so they just apply and explain the phenomenon at hand to people they can study most easily b. As research expands and accelerates, psychologists are interested in cross-cultural differences for 3 good reasons: i. Increasing international understanding ii. Assessing the degree to which psychology applies to people around the world Page 5 iii. For appreciating the possible varieties of human experience 4. Why might people living abroad draw more creative aliens?? a. Because the experience of living abroad can make you a more creative person, especially if you make an effort to truly adapt to the unfamiliar culture (rather than just merely visit) (p. 463). 5. What is meant by etics and emics? a. Etics: The universal components of an idea i. Ex. All cultures have some conception of duty, in the sense that a person should be responsible for doing what she is supposed to do b. Emics: the particular aspects i. Ex. Beyond the etic listed above, different cultures impose their own ideas about what the duty actually is (the emics) 6. What does it mean if a culture is tough, complex, tight, etc.? Is it easy to tell which cultures fit those labels? a. A tough culture is where only a few goals are viewed as valuable and there are few ways available to achieve them b. A complex culture means that it is more modern, has a higher GDP, is more information based, has more cities, and more personal computers c. A tight culture tolerates very little deviation from proper behavior 7. What are some of the differences between individualist and collectivist cultures that are “real, interesting, and important?” a. More autobiographies are written in individualist countries, and more histories of the group are written in collectivistic cultures b. Collectivist—satisfaction in life is based on harmony of one’s relations with others i. Individualist—self-esteem is more important c. People from collectivist carefully observe social hierarchies i. People in individualist are less attentive to differences in status 8. Are people more bothered by behavioral inconsistency in individualist or collectivist cultures? In which type of cultures are people more consistent? Explain how this relates to Funder’s point on page 473: “Personality matters everywhere in the world.” a. The individualist view of the self assumes that the cause of behavior lies within the person i. Therefore, the individual is expected to behave consistently from one situation to the next ii. Individualist cultures are more consistent (behavioral consistency is associated with mental health in American culture) iii. Some research suggests that collectivistic culture members are less consistent from one situation to the next b. Funder says that because individual differences and associated personality traits appear to be equally important in both collectivistic and individualist cultures i. Therefore, personality is equally as important everywhere 9. Do you understand the distinction between horizontal and vertical types of collectivism and individualism? Page 6 a. Vertical societies assume that individual people are importantly different from each other b. Horizontal societies tend to view all persons as essentially equal c. Collectivist: i. Vertical might enforce strong authority on its members ii. Horizontal: might have weaker authority but a strong ethic that enforces equality and sharing d. Individualist: i. Vertical: strong authority but also the freedom (and obligation) to support oneself in a market economy ii. Horizontal: value individual freedom but also assume that meeting everyone’s needs is a shared obligation 10. What is the “caution” about Japan, with regard to the collectivism/individualism distinction? a. Japanese would conform more to group judgments in a replication of the Asch study; Japan is viewed differently from U.S. i. This is seen as a cultural myth by Takano and Osaka ii. This highlights the way that a central aspect of collectivism-individualism theory can lead to members of collectivist cultures as basically “all alike,” and basically lacking personality altogether—which is borderline dehumanization iii. This Japanese case should remind us that not all initial cultural comparisons can be supported empirically iv. We must remember that there is a wide variety of distinctive individuals in every culture on Earth 11. Instead of dividing the world into two types of cultures (collectivist or individualist), some researchers prefer to divide them into three (honor, face, and dignity). Explain what these are. Also, why would people in “honor cultures” be at higher risk for depression, and have higher suicide rates? a. Western cultures are said to be dignity cultures i. Key idea of dignity is that individuals are valuable in their own right and this value does not come from what others think of them b. Cultures of honor emerge environments where laws and police (forces of civilization) are weak or nonexistent and people must protect themselves, their families, and their own property i. These are at higher risk for depression and higher suicide rates because an insult is an important event, because to tolerate it could signal weakness and put one’s person and property at risk 1. They are highly sensitive to threats to their reputations c. Cultures of face emerge in societies that have stable hierarchies based on cooperation (i.e., Japan and China) 12. Can the same traits be used to compare people across cultures? a. Yes, but the same outcome can be associated with different traits i. Consider religion around the world, for example Page 7 ii. In different countries, some personality traits (such as the Big 5) don’t translate exactly 1. So comparing across cultures can be difficult 13. How might collectivists and individualists differ in the way they think about the self? a. Collectivists feel more a part of their social environment than individualists do b. Example: Japanese participants remembered more information about the wider context of a video they viewed than American participants i. Japanese were better able to recognize specific objects when they saw them in their original settings c. These results suggest that an American observer may see a specific object or person in a scene, whereas the Japanese observer is more likely to see and remember the larger context 14. Are there values that seem to be universal? See Figure 13.6. a. Values Suggested to be universal: Stimulation; self-direction; universalism; benevolence; conformity & tradition; security; power; achievement; hedonism 15. On page 490, Funder makes the point that cultural differences which shape personality may be the result of something in the ecological environment, such as “where the fish are.” Explain. a. A lesson from Truk and Tahiti (islands): i. In Tahiti, fishing is easy ii. The ecology is such that it's not a difficult endeavor like it is in Truk iii. You had to be much more aggressive, fearless, sensation seeker in Truk to get where the fish are 1. Men in Truk are much more aggressive 2. Perhaps this is how ecology leads to personality and behavior 16. Are there significant genetic differences between people of different cultures? Could genetics explain cultural differences? a. The differences are small, at most b. Traits are likely to be even weaker predictors of behavior at the cultural level than they are at the individual level c. People within cultures are widely different from each other d. The data available so far can be explained in several different ways e. Cultures themselves are not sharply defined categories, and many people belong to two or even more cultures i. With this basis so complex, it is hard to imagine how genetic differences can be a major contributor to cultural differences f. Moreover, we don’t know if personality determines culture, or vice versa. (Correlation doesn’t equal causation) 17. Funder posits that there are three reasons that cultural differences may be exaggerated. What are they? a. First, cross-cultural psychology has long been in the business of finding differences i. If cultures were predominantly similar, then this field wouldn’t exist Page 8 ii. Even cross-cultural psychologists harbor stereotypes, which may increase their tendency to exaggerate the differences they perceive b. Second, many studies of cultural differences use significance tests rather than examining effect sizes i. When studied at a large level (like one big cultural group), significant results are easy to find c. Third, psychological phenomenon called outgroup homogeneity bias (social psychology) i. One’s own group naturally seems to contain individuals who differ widely from each other, but members of groups to which one does not belong seem to be “all the same” 1. May describe members of another culture as if they are all essentially the same 18. What is your own answer to the question Funder asks, related to cultural relativism, on the top of page 494: Does our cultural perspective mean that we have no grounds for condemning traditions (such as genital mutilation of girls in some areas of Africa and Asia)? 19. Do you know anyone who is bilingual? It would be interesting to ask them about the idea of the “two personalities,” if you have the opportunity. a. The idea of 2 personalities: bicultural identity integration (BII) is a concept that measures whether individuals measure high or low on the trait i. Those who score high on BII: said to see themselves as members of a combined or emergent joint culture that integrates aspects of both source cultures Chapter 14 1. What’s the gist of behaviorism? In this view, what is personality (and what isn’t it)? Can the causes of behavior be observed? Where do behaviorists fall on the person-situation debate? 2. Describe the four philosophical roots of behaviorism. 3. Describe the three types of learning in behaviorism: Habituation, classical conditioning (and the S-R conception of personality), and operant conditioning. 4. If Funder is right about the effectiveness of rewards and the difficulties of correctly using punishments, why do you think people (families, companies, societies, etc.) don’t rely more on rewards to shape behavior? 5. Think about punishments you’re familiar with. Are they being applied correctly? If they aren’t working, would they work if administered according to Funder’s suggestions? 6. What is the distinction between classic behaviorism and Rotter’s theory? Discuss specific and general expectancies. 7. What did Bandura add to the conversation about self-efficacy? What is the implication for therapy? 8. Describe Mischel’s “if…then” patterns of response (and theory of personality). 9. What have the learning theorists taught us about personality?


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