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 Ms. Isha Joshi

 Personality refers to individual differences in characteristic patterns of thinking, feeling and
behaving. The study of personality focuses on two broad areas: One is understanding
individual differences in particular personality characteristics, such as sociability or
irritability. The other is understanding how the various parts of a person come together as a
 Personality is something that we informally assess and describe every day. When we talk
about ourselves and others, we frequently refer to different characteristics of an individual's
personality. Psychologists do much the same thing when they assess personality but on a
much more systematic and scientific level.
 Personality tests are techniques designed to measure one’s personality. They are used to
diagnose psychological problems as well as to screen candidates for college and

 Roberto, Mikhail, and Nat are college friends and all want to be police officers. Roberto is
quiet and shy, lacks self-confidence, and usually follows others. He is a kind person, but
lacks motivation.
 Mikhail is loud and boisterous, a leader. He works hard, but is impulsive and drinks too
much on the weekends. Nat is thoughtful and well liked. He is trustworthy, but sometimes he
has difficulty making quick decisions.
 Of these three men, who would make the best police officer? What qualities and personality
factors make someone a good police officer? What makes someone a bad or dangerous
police officer?
 A police officer’s job is very high in stress, and law enforcement agencies want to make sure
they hire the right people.
 Personality testing is often used for this purpose—to screen applicants for employment and
job training. Personality tests are also used in criminal cases and custody battles, and to
assess psychological disorders.

 Psychological testing or assessment provides objective information and has many goals.
 These goals can be:
 to help clarify diagnosis, determine the severity of a problem,
 screen for risks for future problems,
 make predictions of future behaviors, and
 aid in treatment recommendations.
 This in part occurs because a person's response patterns are compared to others who are
known to have certain traits or disorders.
 The information gained is powerful and can lead to a more accurate clinical picture and the
potential creation of special accommodations.
 Key Terms
 validity: The extent to which a concept, conclusion, or measurement is well-founded and
corresponds accurately to the real world.
 projective measure: A personality test that is used to identify underlying personality traits;
responses are highly subjective.
 apperception: The mind’s perception of itself as the subject or actor in its own states,
unifying past and present experiences; self-consciousness; perception that reflects upon
 clinical: Of or pertaining to a medical facility.
 reliability: The overall consistency of a measure; the likelihood that a measure can be
 Schizophrenia: a long-term mental disorder of a type involving a breakdown in the relation
between thought, emotion, and behaviour, leading to faulty perception, inappropriate actions
and feelings, withdrawal from reality and personal relationships into fantasy and delusion,
and a sense of mental fragmentation.

Objective tests are psychological tests that measure an individual's characteristics in a way
that is independent of rater bias or the individual's own beliefs. Objective tests are often
contrasted with subjective tests which are sensitive to rater or examinee beliefs. They can
also be contrasted with projective tests which are based on Freudian Psychology
(Psychoanalysis) , and seek to expose the unconscious perceptions of people. Objective tests
tend to be more reliable and valid than projective or subjective tests.

 A projective test, in psychology, is a personality test designed to allow a person to respond

to ambiguous stimuli, presumably revealing hidden emotions and internal conflicts. This is
different from an "objective test" in which responses are analyzed according to a universal
standard (for example, a multiple choice exam) rather than an individual's judgment. The
best known projective test is the Rorschach inkblot test in which a patient is shown an
irregular spot of ink and asked to explain what they see.
 How is Personality Measured – The BIG 5
Extraversion - How “energetic” one is.
 People who score high on this factor like to work in cooperation with others, are talkative,
enthusiastic and seek excitement. People who score low on this factor prefer to work alone,
and can be perceived as cold, difficult to understand, even a bit eccentric (slightly strange).
Agreeableness - One’s level of orientation towards other people.
 Those who score high on this factor are usually co-operative, can be submissive, and are
concerned with the well-being of others. People who score low on this factor may be
challenging, competitive, sometimes even argumentative.
Conscientiousness - How “structured” one is.
 People who score high on this factor are usually productive and disciplined and “single
tasking”. People who score low on this factor are often less structured, less productive, but
can be more flexible, inventive, and capable of multitasking.
Neuroticism - Tendency to worry.
 People who score low on this factor are usually calm, relaxed and rational. They may
sometimes be perceived as lazy and incapable of taking things seriously. People who score
high on this factor are alert, anxious, sometimes worried.
Openness to Experience - Tendency to be speculative and imaginative.
 People who score high on this factor are neophyte (beginner or curious) and curious and
sometimes unrealistic. People who score low on this factor are down-to-earth and practical
and sometimes obstructive of change.
 When thinking about personality traits it is important to ignore the positive or negative
associations that these words have in everyday language.
 For example, Agreeableness is obviously advantageous for achieving and maintaining
popularity. Agreeable people are better liked than disagreeable people. On the other hand,
agreeableness is not useful in situations that require tough or totally objective decisions.
Disagreeable people can make excellent scientists, critics, or soldiers.