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PSYC 612: Temperament and Personality— Developmental Origins, Biological Bases, and Implications for Psychopathology Dr. Alex Shackman University of Maryland.

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Presentation on theme: "PSYC 612: Temperament and Personality— Developmental Origins, Biological Bases, and Implications for Psychopathology Dr. Alex Shackman University of Maryland."— Presentation transcript:

1 PSYC 612: Temperament and Personality— Developmental Origins, Biological Bases, and Implications for Psychopathology Dr. Alex Shackman University of Maryland Autumn 2014

2 Plan for Today 1.Round table discussion of T&P—fundamental questions (go to document) 2.Expert perspectives on T&P with short discussion between each video 3.Review syllabus Course mechanics and grading

3 Introductions & Round Table (go to hard copy document)

4 What do the so-called experts have to say?

5 Expert perspectives on T&P We’ll watch 1 … David Watson: Personality; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YXQBFpf_m3k&list=SPh9mgdi4r New731mjIZn43G_Y5otqKzJA&index=57 Jerome Kagan: Temperament; 16’:21” and 5’:16” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rzgHhhU-GQY https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CGjO1KwltOw Jerry Kagan & Steve Suomi: Temperament https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=URee25502aU https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=URee25502aU … you’re welcome to watch more on your own

6 Course Mechanics

7 Welcome! Course Overview Goal Introduce you to a diverse array of theoretical and empirical issues related to the study of stable individual differences in temperament and personality (T&P).

8 Course Objectives, 1 of 4 A major goal of this course is to give you a broad, interdisciplinary background in T&P so that you can: – Be a critical consumer and reviewer of this literature – Understand the strengths and weaknesses of a broad spectrum of biological, behavioral and analytic tools – Broaden the way you think about connections between the mind, brain, behavior – Use these new skills and concepts to enhance your own research

9 Course Objectives, 2 of 4 Become experts on how T&P influence our daily lives and the mechanisms that link T&P to positive and negative outcomes

10 Course Objectives, 3 of 4 Develop a working knowledge of the neurobiology of T&P

11 Course Objectives, 4 of 4 Know and understand the fundamental questions

12 An integrative, multi-disciplinary perspective on the science of T&P

13 When a scientist doesn’t know the answer to a problem, he is ignorant. When he has a hunch as to what the result is, he is uncertain. And when he is pretty damn sure of what the result is going to be, he is still in some doubt…Scientific knowledge is a body of statements of varying degrees of certainty—some most unsure, some nearly sure, but none absolutely certain. —Richard Feynman (1955), Nobel Laureate An integrative, multi-disciplinary perspective on the science of T&P

14 Science is not a body of facts established by experts, but a set of methods for estimating and reducing uncertainty; It is a process, at times messy or tedious, of grappling with nature and our preconceived notions about how it works. There are many, many fundamental questions about T&P that remain unresolved. That’s one of the things that make this class so fun! We haven’t figured it out and there are many challenges that remain for future research. An integrative, multi-disciplinary perspective on the science of T&P

15 In this class you will learn about - the current state of our scientific knowledge about T&P - how T&P is organized in the brain - the implications for understanding psychopathology and other important outcomes. - some of the key techniques used for measuring and understanding T&P, including brain imaging techniques But we will not review the scientific history of personality research (e.g., Freud). An integrative, multi-disciplinary perspective on the science of T&P

16 The T&P Hall of Fame

17 “Consider as a typical textbook…It lists 22 theorists putting forth 20 major theories and faithfully chronicles their extremely divergent views. There is no agreement on definitions, models, methods, results or indeed anything whatever; all is confusion, with no effort used to sort the chaff from the grain. No criteria are offered for judging the truth-value of given statements, no attempt is made to eliminate theories which definitely contradict established facts. and there is no effort at integration As an example I would class among the inadmissible theories those of Freud, Adler, Jung, Binswanger, Horney, Sullivan, Fromm, Erikson and Maslou. They fail essentially because for the most part they do not generate testable deductions; because where they do so the deductions have most frequently been falsified; and because they fail to include practically all the experimental and empirical studies which have been done over the past 50 years. Historically these theorists have had some influence, but their theorizing and their mode of working has not been in the tradition of natural science, and they have not been found responsive to adverse criticism or empirical disproof.” — Hans J. Eysenck Personality & Indiv Diffs 1991

18 The T&P Hall of Fame “Consider as a typical textbook…It lists 22 theorists putting forth 20 major theories and faithfully chronicles their extremely divergent views. There is no agreement on definitions, models, methods, results or indeed anything whatever; all is confusion, with no effort used to sort the chaff from the grain. No criteria are offered for judging the truth-value of given statements, no attempt is made to eliminate theories which definitely contradict established facts. and there is no effort at integration As an example I would class among the inadmissible theories those of Freud, Adler, Jung, Binswanger, Horney, Sullivan, Fromm, Erikson and Maslou. They fail essentially because for the most part they do not generate testable deductions; because where they do so the deductions have most frequently been falsified; and because they fail to include practically all the experimental and empirical studies which have been done over the past 50 years. Historically these theorists have had some influence, but their theorizing and their mode of working has not been in the tradition of natural science, and they have not been found responsive to adverse criticism or empirical disproof.” — Hans J. Eysenck Personality & Indiv Diffs 1991

19 An integrative, multi-disciplinary perspective on the science of T&P In general, I will emphasize a multi-disciplinary perspective Here, research at different levels of analysis, using different tools, samples, or species, is viewed as complementary and mutually informative. Put another way, the class will not be organized around “biological theories,” “psychoanalytic theories,” and so on.

20 Syllabus: The nitty gritty details Go to document


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