Lecture_10.a (1)

Lecture_10.a (1) - Lecture 10 -Psychology of Personality...

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Lecture 10 -Psychology of Personality Julian Rotter (1916 - ) When Rotter developed his Social Learning Theory, the dominant perspective in clinical psychology at the time was Freud's Psychoanalysis, which focused on people's deep-seated instinctual motives as determining behavior. Individuals were seen as being naive to their unconscious impulses, and treatment required long-term analysis of childhood experience. Even learning approaches at the time were dominated by drive theory, which held that people are motivated by physiologically-based impulses that press the individual to satisfy them. In developing Social Learning Theory, Rotter departed from instinct- based Psychoanalysis and drive-based behaviorism. He believed that a psychological theory should have a psychological motivational principle. Rotter chose the empirical law of effect as his motivating factor. The law of effect states that people are motivated to seek out positive stimulation, or reinforcement, and to avoid unpleasant stimulation. Rotter combined behaviorism and the study of personality, without relying on physiological instincts or drives as a motive force. The main idea in Julian Rotter's Social Learning Theory is that personality represents an interaction of the individual with his or her environment. One cannot speak of a personality, internal to the individual that is independent of the environment. Neither can one focus on behavior as being an automatic response to an objective set of environmental stimuli. Rather, to understand behavior, one must take both the individual (i.e., his or her life history of learning and experiences) and the environment (i.e., those stimuli that the person is aware of and responding to) into account. Rotter describes personality as a relatively stable set of potentials for responding to situations in a particular way. Rotter sees personality, and therefore behavior, as always changeable. Change the way the person thinks, or change the environment the person is responding to, and behavior will change. He does not believe there is a critical period after which personality is set. But, the more life experience you have building up certain sets of beliefs, the more effort and intervention required for change to occur. Rotter conceives of people in an optimistic way. He sees them as being drawn forward by their goals, seeking to maximize their reinforcement, rather than just avoiding punishment. Rotter has four main components to his social learning theory model predicting behavior. These are behavior potential, expectancy, reinforcement value, and the psychological situation. Behavior Potential. Behavior potential is the likelihood of engaging in a particular behavior in a specific situation. In other words, what is the probability that the person will exhibit a particular behavior in a situation? In any given situation, there are multiple behaviors one can engage in. For each possible behavior, there is a behavior potential. The individual will exhibit whichever behavior has the highest
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This note was uploaded on 04/02/2009 for the course PSY 370 taught by Professor Forestjourdon during the Fall '09 term at Oregon State.

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Lecture_10.a (1) - Lecture 10 -Psychology of Personality...

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