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  1. The Cambridge Handbook of Personality Psychology : Philip Corr :
  2. The Cambridge Handbook Of Personality Psychology
  3. Unlocking potential with the best learning and research solutions
  4. Personality psychology and individual differences

In this circumplex model, the six types are represented as a hexagon, with adjacent types more closely related than those more distant. The model is widely used in vocational counseling. Trnka et al. Pigors - New York: G. Stechert Company, The Enneagram of Personality , a model of human personality which is principally used as a typology of nine interconnected personality types. It has been criticized as being subject to interpretation, making it difficult to test or validate scientifically.

Perhaps the most ancient attempt at personality psychology is the personality typology outlined by the Indian Buddhist Abhidharma schools. This typology mostly focuses on negative personal traits greed, hatred, and delusion and the corresponding positive meditation practices used to counter those traits. Psychoanalytic theories explain human behavior in terms of the interaction of various components of personality. Sigmund Freud was the founder of this school of thought. Freud drew on the physics of his day thermodynamics to coin the term psychodynamics.

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Based on the idea of converting heat into mechanical energy, he proposed psychic energy could be converted into behavior. Freud's theory places central importance on dynamic, unconscious psychological conflicts. Freud divides human personality into three significant components: the id, ego and super-ego. The id acts according to the pleasure principle , demanding immediate gratification of its needs regardless of external environment; the ego then must emerge in order to realistically meet the wishes and demands of the id in accordance with the outside world, adhering to the reality principle.

Finally, the superego conscience inculcates moral judgment and societal rules upon the ego, thus forcing the demands of the id to be met not only realistically but morally. According to Freud, personality is based on the dynamic interactions of these three components. The channeling and release of sexual libidal and aggressive energies, which ensues from the "Eros" sex; instinctual self-preservation and "Thanatos" death; instinctual self-annihilation drives respectively, are major components of his theory.

The Cambridge Handbook of Personality Psychology : Philip Corr :

Freud proposed five psychosexual stages of personality development. He believed adult personality is dependent upon early childhood experiences and largely determined by age five. One of Sigmund Freud's earlier associates, Alfred Adler , did agree with Freud that early childhood experiences are important to development and believed birth order may influence personality development.

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Adler believed that the oldest child was the individual who would set high achievement goals in order to gain attention lost when the younger siblings were born. He believed the middle children were competitive and ambitious. He reasoned that this behavior was motivated by the idea of surpassing the firstborn's achievements. He added, however, that the middle children were often not as concerned about the glory attributed with their behavior.

The Cambridge Handbook of Personality Psychology (Cambridge Handbooks in Psychology)

He also believed the youngest would be more dependent and sociable. Adler finished by surmising that an only child loves being the center of attention and matures quickly but in the end fails to become independent. Heinz Kohut thought similarly to Freud's idea of transference.

The Cambridge Handbook Of Personality Psychology

He used narcissism as a model of how people develop their sense of self. Narcissism is the exaggerated sense of one self in which one is believed to exist in order to protect one's low self-esteem and sense of worthlessness. Kohut had a significant impact on the field by extending Freud's theory of narcissism and introducing what he called the 'self-object transferences' of mirroring and idealization. In other words, children need to idealize and emotionally "sink into" and identify with the idealized competence of admired figures such as parents or older siblings.

They also need to have their self-worth mirrored by these people. These experiences allow them to thereby learn the self-soothing and other skills that are necessary for the development of a healthy sense of self. Another important figure in the world of personality theory is Karen Horney. She is credited with the development of "Feminist Psychology". She disagrees with Freud on some key points, one being that women's personalities aren't just a function of "Penis Envy", but that girl children have separate and different psychic lives unrelated to how they feel about their fathers or primary male role models.

She posits that to any anxiety an individual experiences they would have one of three approaches, moving toward people, moving away from people or moving against people. It's these three that give us varying personality types and characteristics. She also places a high premium on concepts like Overvaluation of Love and romantic partners. Behaviorists explain personality in terms of the effects external stimuli have on behavior.

The approaches used to analyze the behavioral aspect of personality are known as behavioral theories or learning-conditioning theories. These approaches were a radical shift away from Freudian philosophy.

Unlocking potential with the best learning and research solutions

One of the major tenets of this concentration of personality psychology is a strong emphasis on scientific thinking and experimentation. This school of thought was developed by B. Skinner who put forth a model which emphasized the mutual interaction of the person or "the organism" with its environment. Skinner believed children do bad things because the behavior obtains attention that serves as a reinforcer.

For example: a child cries because the child's crying in the past has led to attention. These are the response , and consequences. The response is the child crying, and the attention that child gets is the reinforcing consequence. According to this theory, people's behavior is formed by processes such as operant conditioning.

Skinner put forward a "three term contingency model" which helped promote analysis of behavior based on the "Stimulus - Response - Consequence Model" in which the critical question is: "Under which circumstances or antecedent 'stimuli' does the organism engage in a particular behavior or 'response', which in turn produces a particular 'consequence'?

Richard Herrnstein extended this theory by accounting for attitudes and traits. An attitude develops as the response strength the tendency to respond in the presences of a group of stimuli become stable. Rather than describing conditionable traits in non-behavioral language, response strength in a given situation accounts for the environmental portion. Herrstein also saw traits as having a large genetic or biological component, as do most modern behaviorists.


Ivan Pavlov is another notable influence. He is well known for his classical conditioning experiments involving dogs, which led him to discover the foundation of behaviorism. In cognitive theory, behavior is explained as guided by cognitions e. Cognitive theories are theories of personality that emphasize cognitive processes, such as thinking and judging. Albert Bandura , a social learning theorist suggested the forces of memory and emotions worked in conjunction with environmental influences.

Bandura was known mostly for his " Bobo doll experiment ".

During these experiments, Bandura video taped a college student kicking and verbally abusing a bobo doll. He then showed this video to a class of kindergarten children who were getting ready to go out to play. When they entered the play room, they saw bobo dolls, and some hammers. The people observing these children at play saw a group of children beating the doll.

Personality psychology and individual differences

He called this study and his findings observational learning, or modeling. Early examples of approaches to cognitive style are listed by Baron Baron relates early development of cognitive approaches of personality to ego psychology. More central to this field have been:. Various scales have been developed to assess both attributional style and locus of control. Locus of control scales include those used by Rotter and later by Duttweiler, the Nowicki and Strickland Locus of Control Scale for Children and various locus of control scales specifically in the health domain, most famously that of Kenneth Wallston and his colleagues, The Multidimensional Health Locus of Control Scale.

Recognition that the tendency to believe that hard work and persistence often results in attainment of life and academic goals has influenced formal educational and counseling efforts with students of various ages and in various settings since the s research about achievement. Walter Mischel has also defended a cognitive approach to personality. His work refers to "Cognitive Affective Units", and considers factors such as encoding of stimuli, affect, goal-setting, and self-regulatory beliefs.

The term "Cognitive Affective Units" shows how his approach considers affect as well as cognition.