Personality

Defining Personality

Prickles & Goo: Alan Watts, South Park

The creators of South Park, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, created a cartoon to a voice-over of the philosopher Alan Watts. Watts discusses his categorization of people into two personality distinctions: prickly and gooey. Prickly people are rational thinkers whereas gooey types are illogical romanticists. What are some benefits and difficulties of categorizing people this way?

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Richard Branson Jumps Off Palms

Richard Branson jumped off the Palms tower to celebrate the new Virgin Airlines flight from San Francisco to Las Vegas. The wind caused Branson to twist around on the cable and scrape against the side of the building. Even though he was injured, Branson has since performed many more stunts, including jumping from buildings. Why do you think Richard Branson continues his thrill-seeking acts? What is Branson’s personality type?

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He is…The Most Interesting Man in the World

This is a commercial for Dos Equis beer. The “Most Interesting Man in the World” campaign utilizes the distinctive accomplishments and personality of a mysterious man. How does this advertising campaign make use of personality? If you were to describe your own idea of the most interesting man in the world, what personality traits would you give him?

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MTV Cribs Personality Project

Annabel brings a classmate to her dorm room in a satire of the MTV Cribs television show. She describes her personality through her possessions and their organization, as well the activities that take place in her room. What do people’s rooms say about their personality traits? How would you describe Annabel based on her dorm room?

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Culturally Speaking: Individualism-Collectivism

In this clip featuring photographs from the creator’s travels to various countries, the video creator defines individualistic and collectivistic cultures. She explains basic components of each culture type. Based on her definitions, explain whether the U.S. is an individualistic or collectivistic culture and why. How does the U.S.’s cultural standpoint affect your personality?

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Personality: A Biological Basis

A philosophy instructor considers personality, in addition to reasoning, a determinant of behavior. He gives a brief overview of personality assessment research (e.g., Allport, Cattell, Eysenck). Research on the physiological or biological bases of personality is also covered. Why did Eysenck argue against computer approaches to personality? What is the relationship between introversion/extroversion and sensory stimulation?

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The Sims 3 New Video: Unique Personality Traits

This video shows what new options are included in The Sims 3, namely variations in personality. The Sims 3 allows its players to create alter-egos who can have almost any career, lifestyle, and personality traits. How do these new possibilities attract users? How could The Sims 3 be used to discover how a person perceives their own personality?

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Demonstrated Traits

Optimism: The Greatest Hitter in the World

In this commercial, a young boy proclaims that he is the greatest hitter in the world. He then proceeds to miss three soft tosses. Instead of becoming discouraged he yells that “he’s the greatest pitcher in the world.” How does this commercial demonstrate optimism? What outcomes could dispositional optimism predict?

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The Most Egotistical YouTuber

This is a comedic piece in which an actor plays a newscaster and lampoons YouTube video bloggers. We are then introduced to Peterwood McBustaload, the winner of the award for The Most Egotistical YouTuber. Flippant remarks and cocky humor follows. In your experience, are YouTube video bloggers egotistical? Why would people display egotism when presenting themselves online?

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Cancer Patient Urges Kids to ‘Be Strong’

WBAL TV speaks with Mackenzie who has had cancer twice in her eleven years and is a part of the Cool Kids Campaign. They use the slogan “Cancer Fears Me” and motivate cancer patients to beat the disease. What research has been conducted on how optimism can affect recovery? What is the relationship between optimism and health?

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Personality Theories

Psychoanalytic Theory: Defense Mechanisms

Jade is a high school student with absent parents who often skips class. She would rather spend time with her boyfriend than do much else. A counselor talks with her during an initial session and a follow up at 6:11. At 9:05 defense mechanisms are mentioned as coping strategies. Which of the following defense mechanisms (compensation, denial, minimizing, escapism, idealization, rationalization, regression) did you see in the video? Explain the defense mechanism and how Jade’s actions represented it.

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Psychosexual Stages – Psych School Musical

In this spoof of High School Musical, two students use many of the terms related to psychosexual stages and defense mechanisms in song. How many psychological terms were presented in the song? Do they correctly explain them in the video? Can you define them?

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Self-Efficacy: Masterpiece Theatre Satire

In this satire of Masterpiece theatre, a student reads from a large book to begin the clip. He leads into self-efficacy and the “problem” haunting our society since 1993, the emo subculture. Explain the emo subculture in terms of self-efficacy, outcome expectations, and overall outlook on life. Explain reciprocal determinism as it relates to the emo subculture.

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Room Personality: Room Raiders Highlights

The premise of the MTV show, Room Raiders, is that a person will pick his/her date based on what they find in their bedrooms. At the end of the show, a person is picked for a date depending on perceptions of their room, not their personality traits or appearance. Why would Bandura argue that rooms have personality? What were some of the more interesting examples of behavioral residue in the rooms? What could those items say about the personality traits of the occupants? How does reciprocal determinism relate to people’s dwellings?

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Id, Ego, Superego: Art Installation

Pablo de Laborde Lascaris uses the Freudian concepts of id, ego, and superego in his art installation project, which is explained and shown in great detail in this clip. What symbolically constitutes the id, ego, and superego? How does the kinetic structure help define how the id, ego, and superego balance each other?

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Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs

This student’s video project clearly defines Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, using visuals to demonstrate each need. The student mentions but does not define self-actualization. What is the definition of self-actualization and how does it relate to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs?

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Fashionable Personality Traits

Are personality traits hip and fashionable? An entrepreneur has created apparel and merchandise featuring personality traits and backgrounds, some of which are featured in this slide show. Would you wear a shirt displaying your personality traits? Why or Why not? Which traits comprise the Five Factor Model? Are the traits in this slide show consistent with the Five Factor Model?

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Coping Strategies

Highly Sensitive People: Coping Strategies

Dr. Ted Zeff discusses his book The Highly Sensitive Person’s Guide and coping strategies for people who are highly sensitive. He and the NBC newscaster discuss physical reactions to stimulating elements. According to Dr. Zeff, how does our society view “sensitivity”? How does that compare with that of other cultures?

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Depression and Anxiety Coping Strategies

Depression and anxiety can be very disabling and difficult. Here are some tools to help people cope during those difficult times, provided by Dr. Tracy Marks. Dr. Marks defines depression and anxiety and gives seven steps in order to cope with these issues. Describe one of Dr. Mark’s strategies and explain why you think it would or would not help someone suffering from depression.

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Personality Assessment

Oh, The Temptation

Mirroring Walter Mischel’s experiment, Dr. David Walsh gives four-year-old children two choices: They can either eat a marshmallow immediately, or if they wait 20 minutes, they can have two. In the original study, how did some children’s ability to wait correlate with their SAT scores later in life?

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Personality Inventories

Intelecom briefly traces personality theory’s history, outlines its uses, and discusses how personality inventories work. What personality inventories are described? How can personality inventories be used?

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Stress, Personality, and You

This student project shows two students, one with type A personality and one with type B personality. He compares their morning rituals and shows them “taking a test.” He explains some of the side effects of stress that type A personalities may experience. He also shows how the type A personality can be beneficial. Does this video clearly define the differences between type A and B personalities?

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The Big Five of Personality

Signal Patterns offers personality assessment that uses the five-factor model of personality traits as its basis. What are each of the five factors (Extraversion, Neuroticism, Openness to experience, Agreeableness, and Conscientiousness) associated with in terms of personality and behavior?

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