A Comparison of the Main Approaches to Personality Psychology Essay

A Comparison of the Main Approaches to Personality Psychology Essay

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A Comparison of the Main Approaches to Personality Psychology


Psychology of personality is a difficult concept to define and
quantify, therefore most personality theories, however different they
may be in other respects, share the basic assumption, that personality
is a particular pattern of behaviour and thinking, that prevails
across time and situations and differentiates one person from another.
Most theories attempting to explain personality represent part of the
classic psychological Nature verse Nurture debate. In other words, is
personality “inherited”, or developed through our interactions with
the environment. In addition, we shall compare and contrast two of the
main approaches to personality psychology by concentrating on
Psychoanalytical Theory (Freud) and Social Learning Theory (Bandura).

By looking at the Psychodynamic approach, developed by Freud, we can
argue that it emphasizes the

interplay of unconscious psychological processes in determining human
thought, feelings, and behaviours. The basis of this approach is that
psychological factors play a major role in determining behaviour and
shaping personality. Freud argued that personality is composed of
three major systems the id, the ego, and the superego. The id
(biological part of personality) is present at birth and consists of
inherited instincts and all psychological energies. The id operates
according to the pleasure principle, seeking to reduce tension, avoid
pain and obtain pleasure. The ego (executive part of personality) is
conscious part of the mind, the “real” us. The function of the ego is
to express and satisfy the desires of the id in accordance wit...


... middle of paper ...


...ogist, 33, 344-358t

Bandura, A. (1982). Self- efficacy mechanism in human agency. American
Psychologist, 33, 334-358

Mischel, W. (1984). Convergence and challenges in the search for
consistency. American Psychologist, 39, 351-364

Rotter, J. B. (1966) Social learning and Clinical Psychology.
Englewood Cliffs, NJ; Practice Hall

Rotter, J.B. (1966) Generalized expectancies for internal verse
external control of reinforcement. Psychological Monographs, 80 (1,
Whole No. 609)

Alfred, A. (1927) The practice and theory of individual Psychology.
New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich

Carlson, R. Neil and Martin, Neil, and Buskit, W. (2004) Psychology (2nd
European edition). Essex: Pearson Education Limited

Gross, R (1996).Psychology, The Science of mind and behaviour (3rd
Ed). London: Hodder & Stoughton

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