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Chapter 13 Notes: Personality Theories

by: Jordan Marshall

Chapter 13 Notes: Personality Theories PSYC 202

Marketplace > Christopher Newport University > Psychology > PSYC 202 > Chapter 13 Notes Personality Theories
Jordan Marshall
Christopher Newport University
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Notes from class on different theories of personality
Investigating the Social Context of Behavior and Cognition
Dr. Mozo
Class Notes
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This 9 page Class Notes was uploaded by Jordan Marshall on Tuesday October 11, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSYC 202 at Christopher Newport University taught by Dr. Mozo in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 3 views. For similar materials see Investigating the Social Context of Behavior and Cognition in Psychology at Christopher Newport University.

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Date Created: 10/11/16
Chapter 14: Personality Theories I) Personality  Personality­unique, relatively consistent pattern of thinking, feeling, and  behaving o Preferences­for how you handle situations, your sense of humor, or  your expectations of others  Personality theories o Each theory is a unique way of viewing a person’s behavior,  you can  use each theory to describe the same person II) Freud’s Psychoanalytic View and Reactions to it  Sigmund Freud (1856­1939) o Psychoanalytic view  Josef Breuer’s “talking cure” o Catharsis  Product of the Victorian era o Repressed sexuality o Rationality and self­control distinguish from the animals  Eros and Thanatos o Inhibited sexuality and inhibited aggression  The iceberg metaphor o majority of content is beneath the surface o Id­unconscious  Operates according to the pleasure principle  Present from birth  Primitive (focuses on basic needs and wants  Life instinct (sexual) competes with death instinct (aggression) o Ego­unconscious, preconscious, conscious  Operates according to the reality principle  Arises in the first 3 years of life  Mediates between the Id and Superego  Rational part of your mind  Floats between all three levels of consciousness o Superego­unconscious, preconscious, conscious  Moral conscience  Develops around age 5  Stores and enforces rules  Ego ideal­seeks parents approval and values  Conscience­parents disapproval  Cause of anxiety o Ego is always caught in the middle of battles between superego’s  desires for moral behavior and the id’s desires for immediate  gratification  Neurotic anxiety­caused by id impulses that the ego can barely  control  Moral anxiety­comes from threats of punishment from the  superego o Defense mechanisms­a process caused by the ego to distort reality and  protect a person from anxiety  Regression­ego seeks the security of an earlier developmental  period in the face of stress  Displacement­ego shifts unacceptable feelings from one object  to another, more acceptable object; scapegoating  Sublimation­ego replaces an unacceptable impulse with a  socially acceptable one  Reaction formation­ego transforms an unacceptable motive or  feeling into its opposite  Projection­ego attributes personal shortcomings, problems and  faults to others  Rationalization­ego justifies an unacceptable motive by giving  a false acceptable reason for behavior  Criticisms of Freud o Sexist  Freud’s theory was thought to be sexist against women because of things like penis envy and he believed women had  underdeveloped superegos which made them inferior to men o Description rather than prediction  Subjective description, solely by Freud, and “after the fact” on  a relatively small sample of patients including himself  His patients were mostly females from upper classes o Unverifiable concepts  Cannot observe, deny, or verify Oedipus complex  Feels more mythical than scientific  Praises of Freud o Freud’s theories were rich and comprehensive in description o First comprehensive theory of personality: every personality theory  since can be seen as a reaction to Freud o Sparked psychoanalysis which is still believed by many to be the best  treatment for mental illness o Was controversial and stretched boundaries for creativity III) Neo­Freudians  Psychodynamic Theory o Eric Erikson o Carl Jung and his concept of the “personal” and “collective”  unconscious o Alfred Adler and his ideas of inferiority and superiority o Adler also talked about birth order and how it played a part in  personality IV) Trait Theories  Trait theories of personality o They believe that we can describe people’s personalities by specifiying their man characteristics o Traits like honesty, laziness, ambition, and outgoing are thought to be  stable over the course of your lives  Dispositional Approaches o Principles of dispositional approaches  Personality is stable over time  Personality is consistent across situations o Consequences of these principles  We must have enduring personal characteristics  Allport’s Trait Theory: Idiographic Theory o Trait­relatively enduring, consistent personality characteristics  (inferred from behavior) o 3 types of traits  Cardinal traits­affect every area of the individual’s life  Central traits­influence many aspects of our lives, but not quite  as pervasive  Secondary traits­affect narrower aspects of our lives  Eysenck’s Three Factor Theory: Nomothetic Theory o Hans Eysenck  English psychologist, believed that there are three fundamental  factors in personalities o Introversion v. Extroversion o Emotionally stable v. unstable (neurotic) o Impulse control v. psychotic  The Big Five o Where we fall on 5 different dimensions determines personality type o Dimensions  Openness­curiosity, flexibility, imagination, artistic sensibility  Conscientiousness­discipline, organization, dependable  Extraversion­outgoing, upbeat, friendly, assertive, gregarious  Agreeableness­sympathetic, trusting, cooperative,  straightforward  Neuroticism­anxious, hostile, self­conscious o Criticisms  Do not take into account the importance of a situation V) Social Cognitive Theories  Social cognitive theories on personality o Focus on how we interact with our culture and environments o Albert bandura’s reciprocal determinism­traits, environment, and  behavior all interact and influence each other  Rotter’s theory of locus control o Julian Rotter­American psychologist began a Freudian, personality  theory combines learning principles, modeling, cognition, and the  effects of social relationships o External locus of control­perception that chance or external forces  beyond personal control determine one’s fate o Internal locus of control­perception that you control your own fate o Learned helplessness­a sense of hopelessness in which a person thinks  that he or she is unable to prevent aversive events  Evaluation of social­cognitive theories o Social cognitive theories tend to be overly­mechanical o Overemphasize environmental influences; gives little or no  consideration to the possibility of innate personality differences or the  effects of genetics o Does not recognize internal human qualities such as hope, aspiration,  love, and self­sacrifice VI) Humanistic Perspectives  Humanistic psychology­an approach that emphasizes personal growth,  resilience, and the achievement of human potential o Humanist psychologists  Abraham Maslow  Carl Rogers  Rollo May  Carl Rogers o Interested in fully functioning individuals o Congruence­this displayed by fully functioning people is a harmony  between the image they project to others and their true feelings or  wishes o Unconditional positive regard­a situation in which the acceptance and  love one receives from significant others is unqualified with no strings  attached o Conditional positive regard­a situation in which the acceptance and  love one receives from significant others is contingent upon one’s  behavior  The bad… o Assumptions are not testable o Hard to operationally define many of the concepts  The good… o Added balance to the study of personality o Encouraged others to focus on “positive psychology” o Fostered new appreciation for resilience VII) Evolutionary Perspective  Evolutionary perspective o Disregards both conscious and unconscious determinants of  personality o Personality is a function of your unique combination of genes  Criticism o Not good at explaining individual differences  Praise o Explains the big five well VIII) Assessing Personality  Projective tests o Ask about meaningless, ambiguous stimuli  Theory behind it that we will give and answer consistent with  the inner workings of our minds o Rorschach Test  Best used to measure how people process information   Creativity, coping, resources, emotional processing,  relationships with others, thought disorders, psychoses o Thematic Apperception Test  Black and white pictures in vague/ambiguous situations  Asked to make up a dramatic story about the picture  Best used to learn the motivation   Believed that a person will identify with one of the characters  on each card  In their stories, people are thought to express their own  circumstances, needs, environmental demands, emotions, and  perceptions of reality  Measuring personality o Standardization questionnaires asking a series of questions where  people rate themselves  Typically include scales   Assumes you can accurately self­report  No right or wrong answers o The responses help develop a picture of you called a personality  profile o 2 common tests  Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory  NEO personality Inventory o MMPI  No specific theory of personality, for example items were  selected on the basis of their ability to distinguish between two  contrasting groups of people­normal and selected psychiatric  patient groups o Psychologists measure genetic contributions to personality by…  Studying personality traits in other species   Studying temperaments of infants and children  Heritability studies in twins and adopted individuals o Personality traits in other species  Examine the physiology, genetics, ecology, and ethology of  animals  Evidence of the Big Five traits in  different species  Conscientiousness has only been found in humans  Puppy personality experiment­owners, people who knew them, and observers in a dog park all filled out personality tests about dogs and all three groups had similar results IX) Personality Traits in Infants and Children  Temperaments­physiological dispositions to respond to the environment in  certain ways o Present in infancy, assumed to be innate o Relatively stable over time  Temperament types: o Easy/flexible­positive disposition, curious about new situations,  adaptable, low­moderate emotional intensity (40% of babies) o Difficult/feisty­negative moods, slow to adapt to new situations (10%  of babies) o Slow to warm up­inactive, calm reactions to environment, negative  moods and withdraw from new situations, adapt slowly (15% of  babies) o 35% of babies have combinations of characteristics and can’t be  categorized X) Environmental Influences on Personality Traits  Situational influences (social learning) o Behaviorist view  Behaviors are rewarded and punished differently in different  situations o Social cognitive view  Personality traits result from a person’s learning history and  their expectations, beliefs, perceptions of events and other  cognitions  Reciprocal determinism  Parental influences o Parental child­rearing practices have a strong influence on who we  become, but research has shown that it is not the primary determinant  The shared environment of the home has little influence on  personality  Few parents have a single child­rearing style that is consistent  over time and that they use with all children  Even when parents try to be consistent, there may be little  relation between what they do and how their children turn out o Parents still influence their children in a number of ways  Religious beliefs and values  Intellectual and occupational interests and skills  Degree of helpfulness  Aggressiveness  Shyness  Social influences: peer pressure o Adolescent culture­different peer groups, organized by different  interests, ethnicity, and status o Peer acceptance is so important to children and adolescents that being  bullied, victimized, or rejected by peers is far more traumatic than  punitive treatment by parents XI) Disorders of Personality  Cluster A: Odd/Eccentric o Paranoid  Hold grudges  Expect to be exploited  Do not trust others  Read threatening meanings into events o Schizoid  Prefer being alone  Have few close relationships  Little/no desire for sex  Have little to say/uncertain how to respond  Unable to experience pleasure  Indifferent or emotionally cold  Unmotivated for school or work o Schizotypal  Unusual perceptions  Little to no friends  Suspicious of others  Reluctant and anxious in social situations  Type B: Dramatic/Emotional/Erratic o Histrionic personality disorder  Provocative  Attention­seeking  Influenced easily  Exaggerated emotions o Borderline Personality Disorder  Fears of abandonment  Extreme mood swings/trouble managing emotions  Difficulty in relationships  Unstable self­image  Impulsive behavior  Suicidal ideation  Transient psychotic episodes o Narcissistic Personality Disorder  Exaggerating achievements  Expecting constant praise and admiration  Lack of empathy   Fragile self­esteem  Sense of entitlement   Taking advantage of others o Antisocial Personality Disorder  Deceitful  Impulsive  Aggressive  Reckless  Irresponsible  remorseless  Type C: Anxious/Fearful o Dependent  Difficulty making everyday decisions (need reassurance)  Need others to assume responsibility for major areas of life  Difficulty expressing disagreement due to fear of loss of  support  Feel uncomfortable and helpless when alone  Seeks relationships urgently if an existing one ends  Unrealistically preoccupied with fears of taking care of oneself o Obsessive Compulsive Personality Disorder  Preoccupied with details  Perfectionism  Reluctant to delegate  Miserly  Over­conscious  Excessively devoted to work  Trouble discarding worthless objects  Rigidity and stubbornness o Avoidant Personality Disorder  Fear criticism  Preoccupied with being rejected  Reluctant to take risks  Views self as inferior to others  Restraint in intimate relationships


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