Data on Allport-Vernon

Topics: Value, Personality psychology, Psychology Pages: 10 (2584 words) Published: April 8, 2012
Value theory PDF

The Allport-Vernon Study of Values (SOV) is one of the earliest, theoretically well-grounded questionnaires measuring personal values on the basis of declared behavioral preferences. The SOV was first published in 1931 by G. W. Allport and P. E. Vernon (1931) and later revised in 1970 by Allport, Vernon, and G. Lindzey (1970). It is a psychological tool designed to measure personal preferences of six types of values: theoretical, economic, aesthetic, social, political, and religious. The method is rooted in a philosophy of values by E. Spranger, who postulated six ideal types of people corresponding to their most important and general beliefs, ways of thinking, and preferred patterns of living. Each one is oriented toward a basic value: (1) Theoretical: truth; (2) Economic: usefulness; (3) Aesthetic: harmony and beauty; (4) Social: love for people; (5) Political: power and leadership; (6) Religious: unity or moral excellence. The idea was developed by G. W. Allport (1961), who argued that personal philosophy of life related to values is a core feature of personality implying direction of motivation, future goals, and current choices. The Allport-Vernon Study of Values  categorizes values into six major types as follows: Theoretical: Interest in the discovery of truth through reasoning and systematic thinking. Economic: Interest in usefulness and practicality, including the accumulation of wealth. Aesthetic: Interest in beauty, form and artistic harmony.

Social: Interest in people and human relationships.
Political: Interest in gaining power and influencing other people. Religious: Interest in unity and understanding the cosmos as a whole. People place different importance to the above value types. This is important from the point of view of understanding the behavior of people. People in different occupations have different value systems which has led organizations to improve the values-job fit in order to increase employee performance and satisfaction. The Allport-Vernon Study of Values, however, has one possible weakness. They measure the relative importance of these values to the individual, rather than the "absolute" importance of each value. A high preference for certain values must always be at the expense of the other values.

Values represent basic convictions that  a specific mode of conduct or end-state of existence. They contain a judgmental element in that they carry an individual's ideas as to what is right, good, or desirable. Values have both content and intensity attributes. The content attribute says that a mode of conduct or end-state of existence is important. The intensity attribute specifies how important it is. When we rank an individual's values in terms of their intensity, we obtain that person's value system. All of us have a hierarchy of values that forms our value system. This system is identified by the relative importance we assign to values such as freedom, pleasure, self-respect, honesty, obedience, and equality. Is capital punishment right or wrong? If a person, is that good or bad? The answers to these questions are value-laden. Some might argue, for example, that capital punishment is right because it is an appropriate retribution for crimes like murder and treason. However, others might argue, just as strongly, that no government has the right to take anyone's life. Generally speaking values are not flexible. Values tend to be relatively stable and enduring. A significant portion of the values we hold is established in our early years from parents, teachers, friends, and others. As children, we are told that certain behaviors or outcomes are always desirable or always undesirable. There were few gray areas. You were told, for example, that you should be honest and responsible. You were never taught to be just a little bit honest or a little bit responsible. It is this absolute or...
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