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Kelly; Personal Construct Theory Samantha Davenport History of Psychology 4/23/13.

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Presentation on theme: "Kelly; Personal Construct Theory Samantha Davenport History of Psychology 4/23/13."— Presentation transcript:

1 Kelly; Personal Construct Theory Samantha Davenport History of Psychology 4/23/13

2 Biography of George Kelly  Born on April 28th 1905 in Perth, Kansas  Parents had an influence in his education  Completed his BA in physics and mathematics in 1926

3 George Kelly  Gained his Ph.D. in Psychology in Iowa  In 1931 he began to work in clinical psychology  Worked mainly as a clinical psychologist in the USA  Developed construct theory as an alternative to behaviorism.

4 Construct Theory  Published “The Psychology of Personal constructs” in 1955  Constructs are developed by people as internal models of reality.  These constructs are used in order to help explain the world around them.  Kelly thought of everyone as a scientist in relation to their constructs  Constructs are based on observation and experimenting.

5 Levels on Construct Theory  Carries a dual role  “Your construct system is your history and your predisposition to perceive”  Are often polar in that they have opposites; the construct of good implies another of bad  When poles are denied, they are said to be submerged

6 Different types of Constructs  The idea of constructs can be shared through words  Personal Constructs; Details of construct are particular to the individual  Core Construct; Constructs that are important to the person  Peripheral Construct; Opposite of core construct

7 Different types of Constructs cont.  Can be dilated or constricted  “A person's processes are psychologically channelized by the ways in which he anticipates events”

8 Eleven Corollaries  Construction corollary ; We conservatively construct anticipation based on past experiences.  The experience corollary ; When things do not happen as expected, we change our constructs (thus reconstructing). This changes our future expectations.  The dichotomy corollary ; We store experience as constructs, and then look at the world through them.  Organizational corollary ; Constructs are connected to one another in hierarchies and network of relationships. These relationships may be loose or tight.

9 Eleven Corollaries cont.  The range corollary ; Constructs are useful only in limited range of situations. Some ranges are broad, whilst other ranges are narrow.  The modulation corollary; Some construct ranges can be 'modulated' to accommodate new ideas (e.g. 'big'). Others are 'impermeable'.  The choice corollary; We can choose to gain new experiences to expand our constructs or stay in the safe but limiting zone of current constructs.

10 Eleven Corollaries cont.  The individuality corollary ; As everyone's experience is different, their constructs are different.  The commonality corollary ; Many of our experiences are similar and/or shared, leading to similarity of constructs with others. Discussing constructs also helps to build shared constructs.  The fragmentation corollary ; Many of our constructs conflict with one another. These may be dictated by different contexts and roles.  The sociality corollary ; We interact with others through understanding of their constructs.

11 References  Atherton, J. S. (n.d.). (2011). Retrieved from rsonal.htm  Boeree, G. (n.d.). Retrieved from  Chiari, G. (n.d.). Retrieved from  (n.d.). Retrieved from ersonal_construct.htm  University of South Hampton. (n.d.). Retrieved from


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