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Personality Pysch Exam II
Terms in this set (145)
What are the fundamental beliefs of behaviorists and preferred method in research? Personality is defined as what?
1. We can only know what we can see. What we see is all we need to know
2. Use behavioral observation instead of introspective methods like psychoanalysis
3. Personality is observable behavior
4. Causes of behavior found in environment; people are controlled by their environments
Pavlov's experiment was?
Classical conditioning on the dog
Describe the differences between the UCS, UCR, NS, CS, CR in classical conditioning.
UCS: Unconditioned stimulus -> response is natural and not learned (Food)
UCR: Unconditioned response -> natural reflex to a UCS (Salivation)
NS: Neutral stimulus --> elicits no response but can become a conditioned stimulus through learning (Bell)
CS: Conditioned stimulus --> when a NS is paired with a UCS, the NS can become a CS that elicits the same response as the UCS (Bell after pairing causes salivation)
CR: Conditioned response --> learned response for a CS that once was a NS
What is generalization in classical conditioning?
Tendency to respond to stimuli similar to the CS
What is discrimination in classical conditioning?
Learning to response to a specific stimuli and not similar stimuli
John Watson is responsible for what experiment? He is considered the ___ of ____?
John Watson conducted the "Little Albert" experiment and is considered the Father of Behavorism
What is second order conditioning in classical conditioning?
When a CS is used to convert a NS into a CS
What is extinction in classical conditioning?
CR to a CS can be extinguished when the CS is no longer paired with UCS
How can classical conditioning influence health? (Use drug example)
When a drug addict injects a drug in the same part of their body and in the same location, it can cause the effects of the drug to be decreased.
Addict may require a higher dosage to be satisfied.
Inversely, doing drugs in new locations can cause one to require lower dosages to get high
How are phobias, PTSD, and panic disorders treated using forms of classical conditioning?
can be used. The patient is exposed to an event or the object that causes their phobia.
--> associating fear with something happy
What is counter conditioning?
Form of extinguishing a negative conditioned response via relaxation such as deep breathing and thinking about something relaxing/positive
Ex. Lamaze (relaxing to make childbirth easier), water births
Classical conditioning focuses on _____ of behavior. Operant conditioning focuses on the ______ of behavior.
Classical conditioning focuses on antecedents of behavior.
Operant conditioning focuses on the consequences of behavior.
Describe Thorndike's law of effect. Who was influenced by this theory?
Influenced Skinner's operant conditioning. This law argued that the consequences of a behavior (the effect) will either strengthen or weaken that behavior.
Learning initially comes from trial and error
Starts with a stimulus that causes a response (behavior). Good outcome = strengthens behavior. Bad outcome = weakens behavior
What were Skinner's beliefs for behavior?
He was a radical determinist so he did not believe in free will.
Personality is a group of
responses to the environment influenced by a history of rewards and punishments
In operant conditioning, the behavior______ the environment.
In operant conditioning, the behavior operates/acts on the environment.
In classical conditioning, the behavior is ______ to the environment.
In classical conditioning, the behavior is a reaction/response to the environment.
In classical conditioning, the subject responds to the environments. In operant conditioning, animals think they are _____ the environment
Animals think they are changing the environment.
What is the process of shaping in operant conditioning? + example
The most effective way of shaping behavior patterns is partial reinforcement schedules, in which the reward was delivered intermittently.
ex. Teaching a shy person how to speak in front of people is not a one step task. A reward can be given for each step along the way. Reward for standing in front of class. Reward for reading in front of class all the way up until the person can speak in front of the class.
Differences between reinforcements and punishments.
Reinforcements are used to increase (strengthen) behavior. Punishments are used to decrease (weaken) behavior.
Positive reinforcement vs negative reinforcement
Positive reinforcement: Give a positive consequence
Negative reinforcement: Remove a negative consquence
Positive punishment vs negative punishment
Positive punishment: Give a negative consequence
Negative punishment: Remove a positive consequence
What are some drawbacks/limitations to behaviorist perspective? (4)
1. Tends to view humans as objects to be trained
2. Tends to dent notions of enduring dispositions within individuals
3. Tends to ignore non-observable phenomena such as traits, dignity, and anticipation
4. Denies free will in humans
Name two psychologists that focused on cognitive affects of personality.
Rotter and Bandura
What was the origin of the study of cognitive aspects of personality?
Developed in response to behaviorism because researchers saw that animals like chimps were able to use logic to overcome obstacles and attain a reward.
Unlike behaviorism, what aspects of a person are taken into account for personality?
Thoughts, beliefs, schemas, prototypes, scripts, self-concept
Julian Rotter was influenced by who?
Who developed the social learning theory? How does it define personality?
Rotter. He believed that personality was the interaction between environmental stimuli and an individual's learning history.
Implications that personality can change
According to Rotter's theory, behavior depends on ____ and ____?
Behavior depends on outcome expectancy and reinforcement value
What is outcome expectancy and reinforcement value?
Outcome expectancy is how strongly we expect that our performance will have a positive result.
Reinforcement value is how much a person cares about the outcome.
Reinforcement value depends on what 6 aspects? Briefly describe each.
: Need to achieve and be seen as competent
: need to have power, influence, and control over others
: need to make decisions for oneself
: need for security and goal-achievement from others
Love & affection
: need for caring from others
: need to experience physical pleasure and avoid physical pain
What are the two types of outcome expectancy? Briefly describe them w/ example.
Specific expectancy: A particular reward will follow a behavior in a particular situation.
Generalized expectancy: Related to a group of situations.
Ex. Person may be quiet in
(generalized), Same person may talk a lot in a
setting like a family dinner (specific)
Rotter believes that personality depends on the situation/environment. What is the likelihood of a behavior occurring in a specific situation called?
Behavior potential. Can be high or low.
What is internal versus external locus of control?
Internal locus of control: Generalized expectancy that the individual's own actions lead to desired outcomes -->
action/achievement oriented, takes control to meet goals
External locus of control: Belief that things outside of the individual, such as chance or powerful others, determine whether desired outcomes occur. -->
less independent, passive, more likely to be depressed, does the bare minimum
According to bandura, social responses follow this format _____ --> ______ --> behavior.
Environment ---> cognitions --> behavior
For Bandura's vicarious reinforcement study with the dolls, what factors of the
affect the response? (4)
3. Motor reproduction
For Bandura's vicarious reinforcement study with the dolls, what factors of the
affect the response of the observer? (7)
What was the fundamental idea behind Bandura's social-cognitive theory?
His work addressed the nature of observational learning as well as the manner in which the
inner person and the demands of a situation combine to determine a person's actions.
Who was George Kelly first influenced by? Why did his views change?
Kelly was first influenced by Freud and use pyschotherapy, dream analysis and attributed problems to sexual desires. His views changed when he started acknowledging that
patients had their own explanations for their problems.
Believed people could explain their own behavior.
What is constructive alternativism? Who developed it?
Our experiences of the world around us, including events that take place or our understanding of people, including ourselves, are open to an immense variety of interpretations.
What is Kelly's personal construct theory?
Bipolar dimensions that we use to order people or objects
People develop personal constructs about how the world works. People then use these constructs to make sense of their observations and experiences.
ex. There is a large brown dog. Some may see an adorable puppy. You may see a threatening animal.
How does Kelly's role construct repertory test (Rep Test) work?
Assesses people's personal construct system. Reveals the constructs through which you view the world.
Compare two people then compare them to a third etc. Used to provide insight on how you see the world. For instance, do you compare people by their strengths, weaknesses or morals etc.
What influences a person's construct system (etiology)?
Determined by your
interpretation of past experiences
How does categorization influence our construct system?
Tendency to automatically put something into a category. Like first seeing a person and categorizing them as being male or female.
What is a schema? How does it work?
Mental organization of information about some aspect of the world
Help us recognize, identify, and remember new things
Only remember info associated with stereotype formed
What is a self-schema? How does it work (+example)?
Ideas about who you are that influences behaviors and emotions
Also influences recall, attention, and memory
Ex. A girl asks a boy who thinks he's attractive but not smart "What is on the exam?". The boy thinks the girl is flirting with him and that is all he remembers from the conversation.
How does self-schema differ from other schemas?
More emotional element, larger and more complex
What is self efficacy? (+example)
Expectation about how competently you'll be able to perform a certain behavior
Determines your action and persistence based on difficulty or success in the past
Low self efficacy in math --> extreme apprehension when taking a high level math class
Where does self-efficacy come from? (4)
How can bad self efficacy affect health?
Can cause stress, depression
People might feel like they can't successfully live health so they do not try
How does Beck's cognitive therapy work?
Illogical thoughts cause negative thought, memories and ideas which can lead to depression
This therapy is made to change a person's way of thinking
What are the advantages cognitive aspects of personality have over behaviorism? (4)
Acknowledges and emphasizes mental processes (e.g., thought, motivation, and planning)
Explains personality through the study of the uniquely human processes of cognition
Individuality = differences in interpretations and perceptions
Recognizes free will through active human thought processes
How would a poor exam score be interpreted by an optimist vs pessimist?
Optimist: Might consider grade useful feedback to change study approach
Pessimist: Might blame professor or question their own abilities
How does Q-sort work?
Person is given a stack of cards with various characteristics and they have to sort them into 9 categories from least characteristic to most characteristic of oneself.
Person can also use cards to describe other people
How does factor analysis work? How is it faulty?
Statistical technique based on the concept that multiple observed variables have similar patterns of responses because they are all associated with a latent (i.e. not directly measured) variable
Ex. Someone who typically feels active is also energetic so this would have a high correlation "r" value. People who are calm would not consider themselves active so this would have a small correlation value.
A factor is no more than a statistical composite so it could not possibly do justice to describing an individual.
What was Gordon Allport's trait theory?
He had a lexical approach to personality and took trait related words out of the dictionary. Compiled 18,000 words to describe traits.
How did Raymond Cattel use factor analysis to reduce Allport's list?
Since Allport already shortened his list by taking away synonymous word, Cattell rated people on these characteristics and use factor analysis to find how correlated the traits were to each other. He came up with "16 personality factors"
How did Costa and McCrae develop this Big Five? Was this an inductive or deductive approach?
This model emerged from extensive factor analyses of the adjectives used to describe personality and from equally extensive factor analyses of various personality tests and scales
Research-driven rather than theory based --> inductive approach to personality which means theory emerges from data
What are the big five traits?
Openness to experience, culture, or intellect
Conscientiousness (lack of impulsivity)
Neuroticism (emotional instability)
Artistic, intellectual, refined, imaginative. Big Five Trait?
Tidy, responsible, scrupulous, persevering. Big Five trait?
Conscientiousness --> lack impuslivity
Talkative, open, adventurous, sociable. Big Five trait?
Good-natured, not jealous, gentle, cooperative. Big Five trait?
What words can be associated with neuroticism?
Nervous, anxious, excitable, hypochondriacal (excessive worry about one's health)
What were the primary criticisms of the big five?
1. Why five? There is nothing special about that numbers
2. Researchers falsified the idea that the 5 traits were independent of each other
3. Trait formation was purely data driven
4. 5 traits were too simple to encompass the complexity of personality
What was Eysenck's theory of personality?
Eysenck took a biological approach to personality. He deduced that traits could be derived from three biological systems in the brain.
What were the three aspects of the brain associated with Eysenck's theory?
Brain regulation of sensory stimuli -- (
Brain regulation of emotion (
Explain brain regulation of sensory stimuli according to Eysenck.
Introversion: Brain is processing a lot of stimuli so external stimulation is avoided (
Extraversion: Sensation seeker (
Cattell: Outgoing, happy-go lucky, assertive --> give trait from Eysenck and Costa & McCrae
Big Five: Extraversion
Cattell: Apprehensive, tense, emotionally unstable, suspicious --> Give trait from Eysenck and Costa & McCrae
Big Five: Neuroticism
Cattell: Intelligent, experimenting, imaginative, venturesome --> Give trait from Eysenck and Costa & McCrae
Big Five: Openness
Cattell: Tender-minded, shrewd, uncontrolled --> Give trait from Eysenck and Costa & McCrae
Big Five: None
Cattell: Conscientiousness --> Give trait from Eysenck and Costa & McCrae
Big Five: Conscientiousness
What trait from Cattell's theory does not overlap with the big five or Eysenck's theory?
What are motives?
Internal psychobiological forces that help induce particular behavior patterns toward a goal
Unconscious --> cannot assess directly
What are the 4 types of motives?
: Need to impact and dominate others
: Need to succeed and achieve
: Need to draw near to and to win the affection of others
: Need for emotion communication (less studied of the four)
Linda goes to a lot of parties with her friends. Explain this behavior as far as her traits vs motives.
Trait explanation: Very high in agreeableness and extroversion
Motive explanation: Fear of being left alone, high sex drive, high desire for happiness or need to be around people
What behaviors can be motivated by power? (7)
1. Being aggressive
3. Reckless driving
4. Taking high risks
5. Working in influential positions
7. Persuading/convincing others
What behaviors can be motivated by achievement? (5)
1. Obtaining degrees/awards
2. Advancing in politics
3. Small business/entrepreneurial activities
4. Exploration and invention
5. Creative arts
What behaviors can be motivated by affiliation? (5)
1. Writing letters
2. Collaborating with liked others on a task
3. Phone calling
4. Being with others (
5. Helping others
What behaviors can be motivated by exhibition? (6)
1. Amusing others
2. Entertaining others
3. Look/appear animated (expressive style)
4. Exciting and shocking others
6. Showing off
Advantages of trait approach (5)
1. Simplifies personality to a small number of basic dimensions
2. Looks for a deeper consistency underlying surface variations in behavior
3. Allows for comparisons to be made between individuals
4. Good individual assessment techniques
5. Uses both lab and field studies, theoretical and applied
Limits to trait approach (6)
1. May reach too far in trying to capture the individual in a few ways
2. May label people on the basis of test scores
3. Sometimes underestimates variability across situations
4. May be biased by implicit personality theories
5. Difficult to determine the number of reliable personality dimensions
6. May underestimate the influence of unconscious motives and early experience
What is existentialism?
Philosophy about meaning of human existence
Reaction against European rationalism and science
An attempt to regain contact with being alive and aware
What are some existential questions?
1. What is the nature of existence?
2. What does existence mean?
3. Why are we here?
4. Why are we born?
5. Why must we die?
What is existential angst?
The idea that life is inherently pointless and that our existence has no meaning, based on the fact that there are limits or boundaries on our existence, namely, that we all must die someday
Explain how avoidance can be used to cope with existential angst.
Lead an unexamined life. Fear of meaningless life cannot be escaped so just avoid those thoughts
Explain how Sartre believed angst should be coped with by facing it rather than avoidance.
Face your demons
: become "superman"
Believe in the path to freedom, dignity and discovery of meaning in life
Compare existential psychology to phenomenological and humanistic psychology.
: Focus on an attempt to make sense of the world
: People's perceptions or subjective realities are considered to be valid for investigation. ex. A phenomenological approach to an argument would be to hear both sides of the story since they will both be different
: Focuses on personal meaning/worth, growth and fulfillment
What three concepts do existential, phenomenological and humanistic pysch have in common?
What influenced Erich Fromm's studies in psychology? What tragedy did he question?
He was trained in Freudian psychoanalysis but he was dissatisfied in how psychoanalyst ignored effects of societal factors on personality
He was concerned about how civilized people were allowing cruel events like the holocaust occur around them.
What was Fromm's theory of love?
An individual must transcend biology and society to actively love others --> reach human fulfillment
Believed the problem of existence in modern society could be solved by love --> love helps people fight alienationation, loneliness and fear
What does Fromm believe causes alienation and anxiety in society?
An increase in freedom and distractions such as social media and cell phones (examples from current society not Fromm's)
Fromm's theory is difficult to test ______ly?
Fromm's theory is difficult to test empirically
What influenced Rollo May's theory?
May has training in psychoanalysis. Freud and Kierkegaard influenced his theories on anxiety. He disliked Freud's theory and preferred Kierkegaard's more.
"Hate is not the opposite of love; apathy is"
"Critical and radical thought will only bear fruit when it is blended with the most precious quality man is endowed with - the love of life."
"Does a poet create, originate, initiate the thing called a poem, or is his behavior merely the product of his ... environmental histories?"
B. F. Skinner
"The unit of investigation for the study of personality is the interaction of the individual and his or her meaningful environment."
"Of the many cues that influence behavior, at any point in time, none is more common than the actions of others."
"All of our present interpretations of the universe are subject to revision or replacement."
According to May's theory, what causes anxiety?
Any threat to freedom or values, alienation and abuse can lead to anxiety
May's theory bridges the gap between ____ and _____ approaches to personality.
May's theory bridges the gap between existential and humanistic approaches to personality.
What characterizes psychological growth aka
Surrendering past values
Moving forward into unknown; exercising freedom
be target of therapy
What characterizes psychological stagnation aka
Clinging to old values
Conforming to others' values
be target of therapy
Ultimately, man should not ask what the meaning of his life is, but rather must recognize that it is he who is asked."
Victor Frankl was an existential-humanistic theorist the emphasized the benefits of ______.
Frankl believed in order to survive, one must find _____.
One must find the meaning of existence in order to survive
What choice did Frankl suggest people make in life?
If people choose to grow and develop, the challenge of the unknown produces anxiety, but this anxiety can lead to triumph and self-fulfillment
Describe the search for meaning. Is it easy? What feelings do people experience? (Frankl's theory of meaning)
It involves healthy tension
It is a frustrating search and people tend to experience emptiness and lack of purpose
It is maladaptive if a person tries to fill this vacuum/void
Logotherapy facilitates what?
Facilitate the search for meaning
"Neither the Bible nor the Prophets—neither Freud nor research...can take precedence over my own direct experience"
According to Carl Rogers, what are people's main purpose in life?
People have a basic need to "actualize"
Maintain and enhance life
Fulfill one's potential and achieve the highest level of 'human-beingness' we can
When is self-actualization reached?
When a person's "ideal self" (i.e., who they would like to be) is congruent with their actual behavior (self-image).
Profound sense of fulfillment, happiness, wholeness, vitality, truth, goodness, etc.
Rogers believed that people are ____. This is a _____ approach which is more optimistic than most _______ approach.
Rogers believed that people are basically good. This is a humanist approach which is more optimistic than most existentialists approach.
According to Roger, what is a fully functioning person?
Person who faces world without fear, self-doubt, or anxiety
How does a person become a fully functioning person?
"Unconditional positive regard"
Parents, significant others etc. accepts and loves the person for what he or she is. Positive regard is not withdrawn if the person does something wrong or makes a mistake (unconditional).
What causes a non-fully functioning person?
"Conditions of worth"
People in an environment with conditional positive regard.
What is the goal and key components to Rogerian "client-centered" psychotherapy?
The goal is to help people become fully functioning.
Centered around the client through empathy, reflection and an environment with unconditional positive regard
Who is the leader of humanism ("Third Force")?
"Human nature is not nearly as bad as it has been thought to be"
Maslow's hierarchy of needs in order. (5)
1. Biological and Physiological needs: Warmth, sex, air, food
2. Safety needs: Limits, stability, protection
3. Belongingness and Love needs: Family, work group, affection, relationships
4. Esteem needs: Status, achievement, responsibility
5. Self-actualisation: Personal growth/fulfillment
According to Mihalyi Csikszentmihalyi, what was the key to happiness?
Flow experiences were the key to happiness. Flow is the sense of enjoyment during "autotelic" activities.
What defines an "autotelic" activity that leads to flow?
Balanced ratio of skills to challenges
Elevation in mood
Time distortion (lose track of time)
What is the basic idea behind interactionism?
The interactionism perspective recognizes that the effect of personality depends on the situation and that situations are affected by the personalities of the people who are present. Interactionism also recognizes that people often choose situations that reflect their personalities
What exactly is a "situation" in terms of the interactionist theory? (4)
1. Physical: Climate, geographic region, food supply
2. Social: Family, friends. partner, teachers
3. Cultural: TV, books, music, magazines, language
4. Historical: Wars, economic changes, inventions
What gave rise to interactionism?
"The great debate"
There was a theory that traits are stable and can predict behavior across situations
Walter Mischel came up with the "personality coefficient". There is a trait-behavior correlation of about 0.30
What influences measurement error in a trait-behavior correlation studies?
Single behavioral measures: high measurement error --> low correlation with (aggregated) trait measure
Aggregated behavioral measures: less measurement error ---> high correlation with (aggregated) trait measure
What were some critiques to Mischel's correlation study?
Error reduced his correlation because it was not aggregated
Behavior has multiple influences depending on the situations
Did all theorists think Mischel's 0.30 value was insignificant?
No, some theorists thought it was meaningful
Was it found that the situation influences behavior more than traits?
No, the situation-behavior correlation was found to be around 0.30 as well
What were some aspects of Harry Stack Sullivan's Personality in Social Context? (4)
1. Personality is an enduring pattern of recurrent interpersonal situations
2. Personality molded by social interactions, shaped by society
3. Change over time
4. "Interpersonal Theory of Psychiatry"
Why was Mischel attacked? What did he say?
"A person's behavior changes so much from situation to situation that it does not make sense to study personality"
According to Mischel, No measure of trait anxiety could account for these variations
What does "illusion of individuality" refer to?
According to Harry Stack Sullivan, the idea that a person has a single, fixed personality is just an illusion
Our personalities change with the social situations --> interactions with others
What does "Interpersonal Theory of Psychiatry" refer to?
Cannot separate personality from social situations
Focus on interpersonal situations
What does social self refer to?
George Herbert Mead's idea that who we are and how we think of ourselves arise from our interactions with those around us; also, having an identity in a social world
What was Henry Murray's focus for his theories? What was his study of personality called?
Personology - study of personality
Focus on richness of people's lives
Study of personality across time
Describe Murray's personological system.
Stressed importance of needs and motivations (e.g., need for affiliation)
Also emphasized the environmental press --> the push of a situation and influences from others cause behaviors to be expressed
ex. Seeing a friend get good grades may push a person to work harder
What is a thema? How is it measured?
A part of Murray's personological system
This is a combination of a person's needs and environmental presses
It is measured with his Thematic Apperception Test (TAT) --> person is present with a series of pictures and they must compose a story (measures imagination)
Could be insight what is actually going on in person's own life
What are some of implications for treatment for interactionist?
1. Problems of the social situation --> problems of the mind
2. Psychiatric treatment should target the social situation
3. Develop "chummy" relationships with patients to build a positive social situation for them
4. Modern practices, e.g., "support groups," "couples therapy"
What are some person-level (personality) causes for behavior?
Traits, motives, drives, cognitions, anxieties, etc. might
lead to the behavior, regardless of the situation
This is how people usually describes others behavior in a situation ex. They are a mean person so that's why they were rude to the waiter
What are some situational causes for behavior?
Characteristics of the situation could foster this not so pleasant behavior,
regardless of personality
ex. The waiter was rude to me so I had to come out of character and be rude back
What is the interactionist cause of behavior?
Personality and situational circumstances interact to produce a behavior
What is the fundamental attribution error?
The tendency to underestimate the influence of external factors and overestimate the influence of internal factors when making judgments about the behavior of others
Personality vs situational cause to explain behavior
How does the power of a situation influence behavior?
"Strong" situations override personality expression --> ex. In a fire, everyone is running to safety
"Weak" situations allow personality to shine: ex. Going on a vacation has no script to it, a person's experience and what they do will depend on their personality
What is a longitudinal study?
Research in which the same people are restudied and retested over a long period
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