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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Clotia L. Robinson
TPSYCH 311
Tacoma Campus

Personality Theory

Covers the major theories of personality within the field of psychology. Students compare and contrast theoretical models, gain understanding of their development within the context of the theorists' lives, and apply the theories to their own life experience. Prerequisite: either TPSYCH 100 or PSYCH 101.

Class description

This course will cover the six theoretical perspectives on personality. We will explore classical and contemporary approaches to the study of personality, examining the reciprocal effects of biological, psychological, and social processes in the development of personality and its influences on emotion, cognition and behavior. Current theories of personality will be presented along with various developmental models. We will compare and contrast classical and contemporary models of personality with the five-factor model of personality and Ted Millonís evolutionary model, a biopsychosocial model of personality. Applications of personality research are discussed in regard to clinical psychology in particular and cultural implications in general. In the course, you will learn not only major theories of personality, but also about your own personality and the personality of those with whom you interact.

Student learning goals

Name 6 theoretical approaches to personality and briefly describe their distinguishing features.

Describe, evaluate, compare, and contrast Ted Millonís evolutionary model of personality with the five-factor model and one other classical or contemporary theory of personality.

Demonstrate working knowledge of Millonís normal types and how they relate to Millonís taxonomy of personality disorders.

Demonstrate ability to read, understand and communicate personality scholarly and research literature.

Describe the relationship between personality theory and clinical practice.

Reflect and apply personality theory to individual experience.

General method of instruction

Lecture and facilitated small and large group discussions, quizzes and facilitation of personal goal-setting.

Recommended preparation

TPSYCH 100 or PSYCH 101 and at least sophomore status.

Class assignments and grading

Assignments will include readings, group and individual papers and presentations, and reflective learning.

Each required assignment is worth points. 500 Points will correspond to an A. Points per assignment are awarded according to published (syllabus) objective criteria. Total points are added at the end of the quarter and will correspond to a final grade.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Clotia L. Robinson
Date: 09/17/2011