Chapter 4 Book Notes

Chapter 4 Book Notes - Psychology 227 Introduction to...

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Psychology 227: Introduction to Personality Chapter 4: The Dispositional Perspective: Types, Traits, and Interactionism The key theme of the dispositional perspective is the idea that people display consistency in their actions, thoughts, and feelings Secondary theme: people differ from each other in many ways Two approaches to dispositional perspective: emphasis on the existence of dispositions and thinking of them as enduring motivational characteristics that very in strength from person to person Types and Traits Choleric (irritable), melancholic (depressed), sanguine (optimistic), phlegmatic (calm) –Hippocrates and Galen Carl Jung – introvert – a person who prefers solitary activities, deals with stress by withdrawing into themselves; extravert –a person who is outgoing and prefers social and exiting activities, seek out other people when dealing with stress Types – distinct and discontinuous categories of persons (qualitative) Traits – dimensions of personality on which people vary (quantitative, how much; dimensional approach) Hans Eysenck – used the term type to imply a supertrait (very broad and important), rather than to indicate discontinuity Types and Traits: Nomothetic and Idiographic Views of Traits Nomothetic – pertaining to an approach that focuses on norms and on variations among persons Idiographic – pertaining to an approach that focuses on an individual’s uniqueness Nomothetic is often viewed as unique in terms of combinations of levels on many trait dimensions; “the unique individual is simply the point of intersection of a number of quantitative variables” –Eysenck; nomothetic is viewed by opposition as oversimplifications What Traits Matter?: A Key Tool: Factor Analysis Factor analysis – a statistical procedure used to find basic dimensions underlying a set of measures Idea: if 2 qualities correlate when assessed across many people, they may reflect a trait that contributes to both of them; patterns Factor analysis looks at the correlation among many variables Process: collecting measurements on many variables from large numbers of people (self-reports or observer ratings); compute correlations between every pair of variables; factor extraction ; describe as factor loadings ; label the factors o A Closer Look at Factor Analysis – Collect lots of data; compute the correlation of every item with every other item (correlation matrix); factor extraction ; compute the factor loadings ; name the factors Naming the factors is important as a wrong name may lead to later misinterpretation Factor – a dimension that underlies a set of interrelated measures, such as items on a self-report inventory Factor loading – a correlation between a single measure and the factor to which it is being related High correlation (0.30 or higher) = “load on” Factor analysis as a tool does 3 things: it reduces the multiple reflections of personality to a smaller set of traits; provides a basis for arguing that
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Chapter 4 Book Notes - Psychology 227 Introduction to...

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