Chapter 11 Psychology 175.102 Flashcards Preview

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Personality

Personality refers to the enduring patterns of thought, feeling, motivation and behaviour that are expressed in different circumstances

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Structure of personality

The organisation of enduring patterns of thought, feeling, motivation and behaviour.

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Individual differences

Individual differences in personality; the way people differ from one another

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Psychodynamics

Psychological dynamics analogous to dynamics among physical forces.

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Topographic model

Divided processes into three types: conscious, pre-conscious and unconscious.

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Conscious mental processes

Rational, goal directed thoughts at the centre of awareness

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Pre-conscious mental processes

Not conscious but could become conscious at any point, such as knowledge of the colour of Robbins.

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Unconscious mental processes

Irrational, organised along associative lines rather than by logic

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Ambivalence

Conflicting feelings or motives

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Conflict

A tension or battle between opposing motives

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Compromise formations

The solutions people develop to maximise fulfilment of conflicting motives simultaneously

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Drive or instinct model

Focused on what drives or motivates people. Freud

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Libido

Refers as much to pleasure seeking, sexuality and love as it does to desires for sexual intercourse.

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Psychosexual stages

Stages in the development of personality, sexuality and motivation

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Development model - Freud

Freud's model of how children develop

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Oral stage

The first 18 months of life. Children explore the world through their mouths. Dependency

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Fixations

Conflicts or concerns that persist beyond the developmental period in which they arise

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Anal stage

Ages 2 to 3 years.
Categorised by conflicts with parents about compliance and defiance.
Orderliness, cleanliness, control, compliance.

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Phallic stage

Ages 4 to 6 years.
During the phallic stage the child identifies with significant others, especially the same-sex parent.
Oedipus complex, establishment of conscience

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Identification

Making another person part of one's self: imitating the person's behaviour, changing the self-concept to see oneself as like the person.

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Oedipus complex

Freud's hypothesis that little boys want exclusive relationship with their mothers, and little girls want an exclusive relationship with their fathers.

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Castration complex

A small boys fear of castration by the father or others

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Penis envy

The girls belief that because they make a penis they are inferior to boys

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Latency stage

Ages 7 to 11 years.
Children repressed their sexual impulses and continue to identify with the same-sex parent

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Genital stage

Age 12 years and beyond.
Conscious sexuality resurfaces after years of repression, and genital sex becomes the primary goal of sexual activity.
Mature sexuality and relationships

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Structural model

Described conflict in terms of desires on the one hand and the dictates of conscious or the constraints of reality on the other

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Id

The reservoir of sexual and aggressive energy.
Is driven by impulses and, like the unconscious of the topographic model, is characterised by primary process thinking: wishful, illogical and associative thought

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Primary process thinking

Wishful, illogical and associative thought
Part of id

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Pleasure principle

Seeking immediate satisfaction and gratification, with little or no consideration for the longer term ramifications.
Part of id

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Superego

Acts as a conscience and source of ideals

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Ego

The structure that must somehow balance desire, reality and morality.
Capable of secondary process thinking.
Obeys the reality principle.

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Secondary process thinking

Rational, logical and goal directed thought

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Reality principle

Recognises that the immediate desire for pleasure needs to be off set against the reality of what the consequences might be

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Defence mechanisms

Unconscious and mental processes aimed at protecting the person from unpleasant emotions or bolstering pleasurable emotions

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Repression

A person keeps thoughts or memories that would be too threatening to acknowledge from awareness

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Denial

The person refuses to acknowledge external realities or emotions

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Projection

A defence mechanism by which a person attributes his own unacknowledged feelings or impulses to others

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Reaction formation

The defence mechanism whereby a person fails to acknowledge unacceptable impulses and overemphasises their opposites

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Sublimation

The defence that involves converting sexual or aggressive impulses into socially acceptable activities

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Rationalisation

A defence in which the person explains away actions in a seemingly logical way to avoid uncomfortable feelings, especially guilt will shame

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Displacement

Defence involves people directing their emotions, especially anger, away from the real target to a substitute

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Regression

The defence involves a person reverting back to an earlier stage of psychological development, typically went under a period of great stress or hardship

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Passive aggression

The indirect expression of anger towards others

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Object relations

Enduring patterns of behaviour in intimate relationships and to the motivational, cognitive and affective processes that produce those patterns

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Relational theories

Argue that for all individuals adaptation is primarily adaptation to other people

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Life history methods

Aim to understand the whole person in the context of his life experience and environment

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Projective tests

Presents participants with an ambiguous stimulus and ask them to give some kind of definition to it, to 'project' a meaning into it.

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Contributions of psychodynamic theories

1. Unconscious cognitive, emotional and motivational processes
2. Ambivalence, conflict and compromise
3. Childhood experiences in shaping adult interpersonal patterns
4. Mental representations of the self, others and relationships
5. The development of the capacity to regulate impulses and to shift from an immature dependent state in infancy to a mutually caring, interdependent interpersonal stance on at adulthood
6. Perhaps most importantly, psychodynamic approaches emphasis human thought and action are laden with meaning, and interpreting the multiple meanings of a person's behaviour requires listening for ideas, fears and wishes of which the person himself my not be aware

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Limitations of psychodynamic theory

Inadequate basis in scientific observation
Sexism

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Cognitive-social theories

Developed from behaviourist and cognitive roots and consider learning, beliefs, expectations and information processing to be central to personality

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Personal constructs

Mental representations of the people, places, things and events that are significant to a person

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Personal value

The importance individuals attach to various outcomes or potential outcomes

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Life tasks

Conscious, self-defined problems people try to solve

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Expectancies

Expectations relevant to desired outcomes, influence the actions they take

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Behaviour-outcome expectancy

A belief that a certain behaviour will lead to a particular outcome

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Self-efficacy expectancy

A person's conviction that she can perform the actions necessary to produce the desired outcome

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Competences

Skills and abilities used for solving problems

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Self-regulation

Refers to setting goals, evaluating performance and adjusting behaviour to achieve these goals in the context of ongoing feedback

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Limitations of cognitive social theories

They tend to emphasise the rational side of life and underemphasised the emotional, motivational and irrational.
A tendency to assume that people consciously know what they think, feel and want and hence can report it.

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Traits

Emotional, cognitive and behavioural tendencies that constitute underlying personality dimensions on which individuals vary.

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Extroversion

A tendency to be sociable, active and willing to take risks.

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Introversion

Social inhibition, seriousness and caution.

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Neuroticism

A continuum from emotional stability to instability.
Report feeling anxious, guilty, tense and moody, and they tend to have low self-esteem.

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Psychoticism

Describes people who are aggressive, egocentric, impulsive and antisocial.

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Behavioural approach system (BAS)

The structure that is attuned to rewards, and leads people to seek out stimulation and arousal.

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Behavioural inhibition system (BIS)

The structure that is attuned to punishment, and leads people to avoid potentially dangerous or painful experiences.

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Five factor model (FFM)

Five superordinate personality traits, known as the 'big five' factors.
OCEAN. Acronym
Openness. Conscientiousness. Agreeableness. Extroversion. Neuroticism.

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Situational variables

The circumstances and which people find themselves.
Play a large part in determining an individuals behaviour, according to Walter Mischel.

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Principle of aggregation

A trait does not refer to a specific behaviour in a specific situation but rather to a class of behaviours over a range of situations

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Temperament

The basic personality disposition heavily influenced by genes

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Person-by-situation interactions

People expressed particular traits in particular situations

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Contributions of trait theory

1. Traits lend themselves to measurement and hence to empirical investigation through questionnaires.
2. The trait approach has also enabled the development of an appropriate taxonomy for the categorisation of personality attributes.

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Limitations of trait theory

1. Some say five factors are too few to describe the huge variations possible in human personality.
2. The model is purely descriptive and does nothing to explain how personality traits develop.
3. They rely heavily on self-reports.
4. The factor structure that emerges depends in part on the items that are included and the number of highly subjective decisions made by the factor analyst.
5. Traits psychology does not examine the dynamic nature of personality.
6. Factors may not mean precisely the same thing in different cultures.
7. Trait theories often provide more insight into the how much of personality than the how or why.

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Person-centred approach - Carl Rogers

Aims at understanding individuals phenomenal experience

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Phenomenal experience

The way the individual conceived of reality and experience themselves in the world

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Empathy

The capacity to understand another persons experience cognitively and emotionally.

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True-self

A core aspect of being, untainted by the demands of those around them

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False-self

A mask individuals wear and ultimately mistake to be their true psychological face

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Conditions of worth

Certain standards that children observe then they distort themselves into being what significant others want them to be

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Self concept

And organised pattern of thought and perception about oneself

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Ideal self

The persons view of what they should be like

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Actualising tendency

A desire to fulfil the full range of needs that humans experience, from the basic needs for food and drink to that needs to be open to experience and to express ones true self

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Existentialism

School of 20th century philosophy that similarly focused on subjective existence. Individual is alone throughout life and must confront what it means to be human and what values to embrace.

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Existential psychology

1. The importance of subjective experience
2. The centrality of the human quest for meaning in life
3. The dangers of losing touch with what one really feels
4. Hazards of conceiving of oneself is thing-like, rather than as a changing, ever-forming, creative source of will and action.

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Existential dread

The recognition that life has no absolute value or meaning and that, ultimately, we all face death.

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Contributions of humanistic theories

1. The unique focus on the way humans strive to find meaning in life.

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Limitations of humanistic theories

1. It does not offer a comprehensive theory of personality.
2. Humanistic psychology has not produced a substantial body of testable hypotheses and research.