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Psych Notes

by: Hana Liebman

Psych Notes PSYC 202

Hana Liebman

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About this Document

Detailed and organized typed notes taken in class on Thursday, 10/6.
Intro to Psychology as a Social Science
Constance Pilkington
Class Notes
Psychology, personality
25 ?




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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Hana Liebman on Sunday October 9, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSYC 202 at The College of William & Mary taught by Constance Pilkington in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 10 views. For similar materials see Intro to Psychology as a Social Science in Psychology (PSYC) at The College of William & Mary.

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Date Created: 10/09/16
Psychology202 with ProfessorPilkington Notes for Exam II Personality Trait Approaches  Basics o Definition of a trait: a component of overall personality. A distinctive personal characteristic that is consistent over time and in all situations o Emphasis on strong measurement to predict behavior in specific situations  Early trait theorists o Gordon Allport: argued that an understanding of a person depends on the traits relevant to a given situation and their interaction with one another  The presence and manifestation of traits depend on other traits  Thought the dictionary was a good place to create a lexicon (vocabulary) for personality  Found 18,000 relevant words  1930s o Cattell: took Allport’s 18,000 words and eliminated the redundancies  Used factor analysis to identify clusters of overlapping personality words  Came up with 16 traits  Eysenk’s work o Argued that 3 broad/basic traits can accurately determine a person’s personality  Extraversion (vs. introversion): measure of friendliness, impulsivity, the craving of excitement, and the seeking out others’ company  Neuroticism (vs. stability): measure of moodiness, anxiety, and restlessness  Psychoticism: measure of interpersonal coldness, egocentrism, and aggressive behavior o Argued for a biological basis for traits  Extraversion vs. introversion: based on the measurement of someone’s baseline cortical arousal (BCA), or neurological activity  When alone, introverts have a higher BCA and thus react more strongly to external stimuli  Research supports that introverts have stronger physiological reactions to sudden noises and require less stimuli to get high levels of arousal  Extraverts have a lower BCA and thus seek out more arousal through exciting experiences and risk-taking to achieve that higher BCA  The Big Five o Finds the middle ground between Cattell and Eysenk o Boils personality down to 5 basic traits  Extraversion: how energetic and sociable  Agreeableness: how cooperative, good-natured, sympathetic, and trusting  Conscientiousness: how dependable, reliable, organized, and responsible  Neuroticism: how easily upset, tense, anxious, and moody  Openness to Experience: how open-minded, curious, logical, and imaginative (measures the complexity/quality of a person’s mental life) o Research supports that these 5 basic traits are good predictors of behavior and descriptions of personality  Facets: more specific sub-traits that enable a more nuanced analysis (5 sub-traits under each Big Five category, so 25 facets in all)  Correlations of the Big Five traits o Subjective well-being: cognitive judgment on life’s satisfaction and the resulting emotional responses  A positive subjective well-being positively correlates (+r) with extraversion and negatively correlates (–r) with neuroticism o Psychological problems  Anxiety disorders +r with neuroticism  Substance abuse +r with openness and –r with conscientiousness o Identity development stages  Identity achievement +r with conscientiousness and extraversion and –r with neuroticism  Moratorium +r with neuroticism  Foreclosure –r with openness  Diffusion +r with neuroticism and –r with agreeableness o Immigrants  If they identify with their host culture: +r with openness and extraversion  If they are committed to their original culture: +r with agreeableness and conscientiousness o Romantic relationships  High neuroticism and low agreeableness +r with lower relationship satisfaction  More likely to have relationship stress/tension and break up How Strong Are These Correlations?  Mischel: personality psychologist who argued that there’s a lot of inconsistency in people’s behavior o Found the correlation between personality and behavior to be r = 0.3  Person by Situation debate o Social psychologists focus on how specific social situations determine behavior o Personality psychologists focus on how a person’s personality traits and internal factors determine behavior  Resolutions o Distinction between strong vs. weak situations  Strong situations: lots of cues that determine behavior  Weak situations: few cues as to what should be done, which gives personality room to influence behavior o Different traits describe different people  Self-selected traits correlate more strongly with actual behavior o Measuring behavior means accurately measuring a specific trait in a certain situation  Correlation between a general trait and general behavior is stronger


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