Lecture Outlines - Fall 2013

Meeting 1 (Sept. 16).  Exams returned.  Discuss research project

Meeting 2 (Sept. 18) Introduction to trait approach

       I. Trait Assumptions

           Traits defined

           Traits are organized

                   3 trait systems

            Emphasis is on common traits (Nomothetic approach)

            Cross-situational consistency and temporal stability

                    But relative rather than absolute

       II. Measurement

            A. Assumptions

                 Traits are concepts - abstractions

                 Traits are unobservable  

                 Many ways to measure a trait

Meeting 3 (Sept. 20)         

                 Epistemic Inference is made 

            B. Reliability (= consistency; estimate of error)

                  1. Over time (temporal; test-retest)  

                  2. Over observers (inter-rater; agreement rates)

                  3. Over items (internal consistency)

                C. Validity

                   Relationship with reliability 







Meeting 4  (Sept. 23)  Take 16pf

Meeting 5  (Sept. 25)

       III. Test development strategies

            A. Rational-theoretical

              - theory driven (e.g., Kiersey-Bates)

            B. Group Contrast (based on concurrent validity)

                    - emphasis on practical concern (e.g., MMPI)  Strategies continued

       Return 16 pf  

Meeting 6 (Sept. 27)

            C. Factor Analytic

                 - empirically derive traits (e.g., 16PF)

                 - find underlying structure based on trait covariation

Meeting 7 (Sept. 30) Break into groups and discuss research project             

Meeting 8 (Oct. 2)  Discuss 16PF traits

                  - Briefly discuss meaning of each trait

Meeting 9 (Oct. 4) Finish 16pf

                   - Present/discuss reliability/validity of 16pf

                   - Criticisms of 16pf

                            Subjectivity of factor analysis

                            Validity of natural language assumption

                             Ratings reflect Implicit Personality Theories

                     - Other major trait theories

                              Big 5 - OCEAN

Meeting 10 (Oct. 7) Trait critiques

                      - Mischel's critique of traits: traits don't predict behavior; people are inconsistent

                            Reflects fundamental attribution error

                             Traits are an illusion

                        - Responses to Mischel

                              1. Traits aren't an illusion; unacquainted observers agree in their ratings of others.

                              2. Reliability problem; use aggregation techniques

                              3. Interactionism; differential effects of traits across situations        

Meeting 11 (Oct. 9) Finish up and review

                    Pure interactionism is atheoretical (e.g., how do traits and situations interact?)

                    More theoretical interactionism: Snyder & Ickes mediator variable approach (when  

                         do traits predict behavior?). Mediators: situations, traits, behaviors,  people.