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Personality Theories

  • Date Submitted: 11/11/2010 06:41 AM
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LEARNING OBJECTIVES INTRODUCTION WHAT IS PERSONALITY? PSYCHOANALYTIC THEORIES – FREUD AND BEYOND Freud’s models of the mind In the wake of Freud HUMANISTIC THEORIES – INDIVIDUALITY The drive to fulfil potential Understanding our own psychological world TRAIT THEORIES – ASPECTS OF PERSONALITY Cattell’s 16 trait dimensions Eysenck’s supertraits Five factors of personality Trait debates BIOLOGICAL AND GENETIC THEORIES – THE WAY WE ARE MADE Inhibition and arousal Genetics vs. environment SOCIAL–COGNITIVE THEORIES – INTERPRETING THE WORLD Encodings – or how we perceive events Expectancies and the importance of self-efficacy Affects – how we feel Goals, values and the effects of reward Competencies and self-regulatory plans FINAL THOUGHTS SUMMARY REVISION QUESTIONS FURTHER READING

Learning Objectives
By the end of this chapter you should appreciate that:

personality theorists are concerned with identifying generalizations that can be made about consistent individual differences between people’s behaviour and the causes and consequences of these differences; Sigmund Freud developed a psychoanalytic approach that emphasized the role of the unconscious in regulating behaviour; Raymond Cattell and Hans Eysenck proposed traits as descriptors that we use to describe personality and that have their origins in everyday language; biological theories of personality attempt to explain differences in behaviour in terms of differences in physiology, particularly brain function; research in behavioural genetics has permitted the examination of both genetic and environmental factors in personality; social–cognitive theories of personality examine consistent differences in the ways people process social information, allowing us to make predictions about an individual’s behaviour in particular contexts.






You do not need to be a psychologist to speculate about personality. In our everyday conversations...


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