September 15, 2014
Dispositional vs. Biological Theory
Dispositional personality theories are quite different from biological personality theories. The two will be compared and dissected in this article. The Big Five Personality Test will also be analyzed and how it is used to study personality will be examined.
Dispositional personality theories contend that each person per certain stable, long lasting dispositions. These dispositions make a person display certain emotions, attitudes, and behaviors. These dispositions appear in many different kinds of situations, which lends the belief that people behave in predictable ways even when they are in different situations. The theory also states that each person has a different set of dispositions, or that their sets of dispositions have different strengths which assembles a unique pattern.
There are two different types of dispositional theories, type and trait theories. Type theories assign people to different categories. These categories depend on the individual’s temperament. Hippocrates and Galen suggest temperament is based on body fluids (which sounds a bit outlandish). Blood is said to represent the sanguine temperament. This is a person who is warmhearted, optimistic, and laid back. Phlegm is a phlegmatic person who is lethargic, calm, and slow to action (when one thinks about this in relation to actual phlegm it is quite disgusting). Black bile is a melancholic person, an individual who might be very sad and depressed. Last but not least, is yellow bile, which represents a choleric personality. A choleric personality is someone who is angry, assertive, and quick to action.
The theory states that whichever body fluid is highest determines the personality type. As a modern person this theory sounds implausible. If one has a cold, and therefore more phlegm does that change their personality? And for how long does the personality
References: Feist, J., Feist, G. J., & Roberts, T. (2013). Theories of personality (8th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill. Psychology Today. (2011). Big five personality test. Retrieved from http://psychologytoday.tests.psychtests.com/take_test.php?idRegTest=1297