Personal Construct Theory

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1.An evaluation of George Kelly's Personal Construct Theory in terms of its usefulness in contemporary society Personality is an influential and important aspect of psychology. Personality psychology asks the question what does it mean to be a person? And it is primarily concerned with human nature and individual differences (Pervin and John, 2001). This essay will demonstrate an understanding of George Kelly's Personal Construct Theory and its position in relation to the major perspectives in personality psychology. It will seek to evaluate Personal Construct Theory in terms of three main criteria of evaluation. Firstly comprehensiveness, which is its ability to account for and encompass a wide variety of data. Secondly parsimony, which is its ability to accounts for varied phenomena in a simple, economical and consistent way, and finally research relevance or relative utility, which is its ability to produce hypotheses which can be confirmed through systematic research. Many psychologists have developed theories to understand and explain individual personality from different perspectives, including behavioural, psychodynamic, trait, social learning, biological, humanist, interactionist and cognitive (Friedman and Schustack, 1999). Since the 1950s there has been, what is described as a cognitive revolution with the model of a person on sophisticated processors of information. This was at odds with behavioural and social learning theories put forward by Skinner and Clark (Friedman and Schustack, 1999). Although Kelly did not label his approach as cognitive it is generally accepted to be associated with the cognitive approach. This can be said as Personal Construct Theory emphasises the ways in which we perceive events, the ways we interpret these events in relation to already existing structures and the ways that we behave in relation to these interpretations (Pervin and John, 2001). A theory of personality, if it can be considered complete, should cover...
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