Psychology and Personality

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Personality Paper
Tabitha Martin
PSY/211
April 25, 2013
Alicia M. Pearson

Abstract

The study of personality has a broad and varied history in psychology with an abundance of theoretical traditions. The major theories include dispositional trait perspective, psychodynamic, humanistic, biological, behaviorist, and social learning perspective. However, many researchers and psychologists do not explicitly identify themselves with a certain perspective and instead take an eclectic approach. Research in this area is empirically driven, such as dimensional models, based on multivariate statistics, such as factor analysis, or emphasizes theory development, such as that of the psychodynamic theory. There is also a substantial emphasis on the applied field of personality testing. In psychological education and training, the study of the nature of personality and its psychological development is usually reviewed as a prerequisite to courses in abnormal psychology or clinical psychology.

Personality Paper
Personality is connected with Darwin's Theory of Evolution. It generally explains why there are personality differences between individuals.[ Schacter, Daniel; Gilbert, Daniel; Wegner, Daniel (2011).] Personality also refers to the pattern of thoughts, feelings, social adjustments, and behaviors consistently exhibited over time that strongly influences one's expectations, self-perceptions, values, and attitudes. It also predicts human reactions to other people, problems, and stress.[ Winnie, J.F. & Gittinger, J.W. (1973)][ Krauskopf, C.J. & Saunders, D.R, (1994)] There is still no universal consensus on the definition of "personality" in psychology. Gordon Allport described two major ways to study personality: the nomothetic and the idiographic. Nomothetic psychology seeks general laws that can be applied to many different people, such as the principle of self-actualization or the trait of extraversion. Idiographic psychology is an attempt to understand the unique aspects of a particular individual.

The study of personality has a broad and varied history in psychology with an abundance of theoretical traditions. The major theories include dispositional trait perspective, psychodynamic, humanistic, biological, behaviorist, and social learning perspective. However, many researchers and psychologists do not explicitly identify themselves with a certain perspective and instead take an eclectic approach. Research in this area is empirically driven, such as dimensional models, based on multivariate statistics, such as factor analysis, or emphasizes theory development, such as that of the psychodynamic theory. There is also a substantial emphasis on the applied field of personality testing. In psychological education and training, the study of the nature of personality and its psychological development is usually reviewed as a prerequisite to courses in abnormal psychology or clinical psychology.

Perspectives of Personality
Many of the ideas developed by historical and modern personality theorists stem from the basic philosophical assumptions they hold. The study of personality is not a purely empirical discipline, as it brings in elements of art, science, and philosophy to draw general conclusions. Freedom versus determinism

This idea seeks to answer whether humans have control over their own behavior and understand the motives behind it or our behavior is causally determined by forces beyond our control. Behavior is categorized as being unconscious, environmental, or biological by various theories. [Engler, Barbara (2008)]. Heredity versus environment

Personality is thought to be determined largely by genetics and biology, by environment and experiences, or by some combination resulting thereof. Contemporary research suggests that most personality traits are based on the joint influence of genetics and environment. One of the forerunners in this arena is C. Robert Cloninger, who pioneered the...
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