Biological and Humanistic Approaches Personality Assessment

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People often wonder what they are made of and why they do the things they do. Are people born to do and act a certain way, or do they have a choice to act in a certain way? This paper will speak about two approaches that is said to have influence on one the turnout of one's personality. These two approaches are the biological approach and the humanistic approach. By studying these two approaches, one can identify one's personality and whether it favors the biological approach or the humanistic approach.

The biological approach to personality is that all traits can be subsumed within three personality dimensions. These dimensions are called extroversion-introversion, neuroticism, and psychoticism (Burger, 2007). The extraversion personality is considered to be outgoing and exhibits the trait of sociability. The extraversion personality is the one who one would find the life of the party. The extravert has a different level of cerebral cortex arousal when in a non-stimulating, resting state (burger, 2007). The extravert generally has a lower level of cortical arousal than introverts. The lower level of cortex arousal in extraverts causes them to seek out highly arousal social behavior. If one were to go to a social gathering such as a party, or just a group of friends hanging out, one could probably pick out the extraversion personality by the way the person acts and talks. The person with the introversion personality would be just the opposite.

The introversion personality is quieter and laid back. The introversion personality has a higher level of cerebral cortex arousal and does not need to be the life of the party or around many friends. The introversion personality is comfortable being alone and reading a book. The introversion personality prefers non-stimulating environments because he or she does not want their already high arousal level to get out of control. External stimulation will cause the introvert to become aroused quicker than extraverts and want to get away from the activity that is causing the stimulation level to become too high. The second personality dimension is neuroticism.

People who score high in the neuroticism personality tends to become emotional at minor frustrations. A person whom gets highly frustrated displaying the international finger sign when cut off by a driver who may not have even seen him or her is usually one that would score high in neuroticism. The high neuroticism type is easily excited, gets frustrated easily, and more often than not depressed. People who score low in the neuroticism personality are less acceptable to swings in emotions and are calmer. The third personality dimension is the psychoticism dimension.

People who score high in the psychoticism dimension are egocentric, aggressive, impersonal, cold, lacking in empathy, impulsive, lacking concern for others (Burger, 2007). I have a friend whom fits that description perfectly. An example of a person who scored high in psychoticism would be one who has to be right all the time, step on friendship so he or she can get ahead, and has no concern for the people he or she hurts. The humanistic approach is another approach that claims that belief in personal responsibility in life determines personality.

In the humanistic approach compared to the biological approach, people are the ones who are largely responsible for their actions (Burger, 2007). Even though one may respond automatically to events or are motivated by unconscious impulses, the humanistic approach says that one still has the power to determine his or her own destiny and to decide his or her actions at any given moment (Burger, 2007). An example of this would be a person whom is brought up in an environment full of crime, death, and drugs. The person has a choice of living the way his environment is or choose a way out and be a productive citizen. Another element of the humanistic approach is the emphasis on "here and now."According to Burger,...
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