To Define Personality One Must Understand Exactly What The Term Personality Means. Psych/645 Essay

1962 words - 8 pages

Scientific Study of Personality Paper
Michelle Denning
January 19, 2015
Dr. A. Rawl's
Scientific Study of Personality Paper
Personality is the characteristic patterns of thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that make each person unique (Cervone & Pervin, 2010, p. 8). It develops within individuals and remains consistent throughout one’s life. People assess and describe the personalities of others around them, and usually people do not realize they are doing it. Observing how and why people act the way they do is no different from what a personality psychologist does. However, informal assessments of character primarily focuses on individuals, and personality psychologists focus more on conceptions of character, which applies to everyone. Over the years, personality research has discovered many theories to help explain how and why certain personality traits develop.
To define personality one must understand exactly what the term personality means.
According to Cervone and Pervin (2010), “Personality refers to psychological qualities that
contribute to an individual’s enduring and distinctive patterns of feeling, thinking, and behaving” (p. 8). Enduring means the quality that appears to be consistent overtime and indifferent situations of an individual’s life (Cervone & Pervin, 2010). People change over time and their behaviors do as well in different situations. “The introvert at one period in life turns out to be an extravert in later life” (Cervone & Pervin, 2010, p. 8).
While some introverts in certain social situations become extrovert in other situations (Cervone & Pervin, 2010). A personality psychologist’s job is to distinguish and explain patterns of an individual’s psychological functioning, and the observed patterns that stick out overtime and during certain situations (Cervone & Pervin, 2010). Distinctive is when personality psychology focus on the psychological factors that separates individual’s from one another (Cervone & Pervin, 2010). For example, an individual is not going to say they feel angry when things do not go his or her way, but feel good when things go his or her way. Contribute to means that personality psychologist’s look for psychological aspects that remotely influence and attempts to explain a person’s “distinctive and enduring tendencies” (Cervone & Pervin, 2010, p.8).
Personality psychology is descriptive. Researchers describe patterns in personality development, and the “differences in a population of people, or patterns of behavior exhibited by a particular individual in different situations” (Cervone & Pervin, 2010, p. 8). Personality theorists want to shift from such description to scientific explanation by distinguishing psychological aspects that “contribute to the patterns of development, individual differences, and individual behavior that are observed” (Cervone & Pervin, 2010, p. 8). The goal o...


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