Module 18: Trait and Social-Cognitive Perspectives on Personality

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trait

Aspects of personality that are relatively consistent.

personality

Individual's characterisitc pattern of thinking, feeling, and acting.

social-cognitive perspective

Perspective stating that understanding personality involves considering how people are affected by a particular situation, by what they have learned, by how they think, and by how they interact socially.

(Gordon) Allport

American psychologist and trait theorist who researched the idea that individual personalities are unique; listed more than 18,000 ways to describe people.

(Raymond) Cattell

English psychologist who researched whether some traits predicted others; he proposed 16 key personality dimensions or factors to describe personality.

(Hans) Eysenck

German psychologist who researched the genetically influenced dimensions of personality, including extraversion and introversion.

Eysenck

Who studied extraversion/introversion?

Conscientiousness, Agreeableness, Neuroticism, Openness, Extraversion (CANOE)

What are the "Big Five" personality traits?

personality inventories

Questionnaires on which people respond to items designed to guage a range of feelings and behaviors; used to assess selected personality traits.

validity

Extent to which a test measures or predicts what it is supposed to test.

reliability

Extent to which a test yields consistent results, regardless of who gives the test of when or where it is given.

(Albert) Bandura

Canadian-American psychologist who developed the social-cognitive perspective and believed that to undertsand personality on must consider the situation and the person's thoughts before, during, and after an event.

Bandura

Who developed the "Bobo doll" experiment?

reciprocal determinism

Mutual influences between personality and environmental factors.

external locus of control

Perception that chance, or forces beyond your control, determines your fate.

internal locus of control

Perception that you control your own fate.

learned helplessness

Hopeless feelings when an animal of human can't avoid repeated bad events.

(Martin) Seligman

American psychologist who researched helplessness before turning his interests to optimism; he has been the primary proponent of positive psychology.

positive psychology

Movement in psychology that focuses on the study of optimal human functioning and the factors that allow individuals and communities to thrive.

Seligman

Who created learned helplessness?

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