The Balance of Personality
Chris Allen, Portland State University
Copyright Year: 2020
Publisher: Portland State University Library
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It was fairly comprehensive, however, it depends on the audience. It would be suitable for an undergraduate audience - first two years. If you were looking to have a an upper level course or graduate level, then I think that it falls short. To... read more
It was fairly comprehensive, however, it depends on the audience. It would be suitable for an undergraduate audience - first two years. If you were looking to have a an upper level course or graduate level, then I think that it falls short. To make it more amenable to the upper division courses, I think it needs to be more comprehensive and have more detail and more research in the actual text of the book. For example, there was barely anything about implicit tests.
The information was accurate. One of my concerns, however was the author's preoccupation with one of the trait theories - OCEAN. It appeared as though, at least in the beginning of the book, there were many references to this particular trait theory more often than any other. It even popped up when discussing other theories. He also refers to Covey as a theorist which I would not consider him a psychological theorist.
The topics were all relevant. I think most of the information was up-to-date. Personality theory is not something that has radically changed in recent times. I would like to have seen more recent reference to current research, though.
The writing was very clear and was easy to read. The level of the writing was not difficult. Most entering freshmen could easily understand it.
The format was consistent throughout. I did like the video clips and how the vocabulary was clearly set up at the end.
The text is very modular. The units are easily divided into just the right size bits so that no one section is overwhelming. You could assign any one module at any point in the term. No one section is dependent upon another.
The topics are presented in a clear fashion. However, if you wanted to go out of order, it would not be an issue.
I didn't see any navigation problems. The displays were good. I was able to click on charts and make them bigger when I needed to. The videos were good as were the activities.
I didn't see any grammatical errors, but there were spelling ones. For example, on page 94, paragraph 4, the author writes "Covery" rather Covey. He also refers to Covey as a theorist which I would not consider him a psychological theorist.
There is inclusion of different cultures. It would be good to see pictures of individuals that might represent individuals within the disabled population. Maybe a picture of students doing sign language or in a wheel chair. Something that represents those students is often overlooked in all books.
The book The Balance of Personality is very engaging to the reader. Dr. Chris Allen has created a source that may be used for the upper level classes with an interest in theories of personality development. With a thorough table of contents,... read more
The book The Balance of Personality is very engaging to the reader. Dr. Chris Allen has created a source that may be used for the upper level classes with an interest in theories of personality development. With a thorough table of contents, this book may also be utilized for those seeking research on particular personality issues.
References listed after each chapter and at the end of the book are extensive. By utilizing graphs, the author has allowed the reader to assess the content in an easy to use format. The information appears to be accurate and thorough and unbiased.
The content on nature-nurture, personality disorders, subjective well-being may be used by Health Professionals studying psychiatry. Specific case studies/pictures are included to show application of theory to practice.
This book starts each chapter with learning objectives and an introduction. LInks are available thru-out the chapters to assist with further knowledge.
The author is very aware of keeping the reader engaged. Graphs and photographs are used thru-out to increase understanding. Science, history and present day applications of the balance of personality are evident in the book.
The set-up of the chapters is consistent in this book. Vocabulary, references, and quizzes assist the reader to focus on priorities. The Table of Contents is very specific.
This book flows very smoothly and makes for an enjoyable read. The chapter on Happiness was a surprise for this type of text, but it is portrayed in a scientific, theory to practice format.
With photographs, videos, graphs thru out to keep the reader interested, this book is a pleasant read. The font used was visually appealing.
No grammatical errors were found
Information is included on Hinduism, Buddhism and the Jewish faith at various parts of the texts. All of the information was presented in a very culturally sensitive format. A goal could be to include information about the balance of personality with various cultures.
As a health professional with a focus on psychiatric disorders, this book could definitely be utilized for students who have a primary knowledge of psychology. The information on DNA, schizophrenia, and abuse is relevant and up to date. By including yoga, meditation and mindfulness, the author also reaches out to the reader of the importance of balancing personality.
Dr. Allen’s textbook covers the most notable fundamental theories of Personality Psychology. It provides a history of theories of psychology with terminology and a glossary of terms at the end of each chapter. The embedded videos (in the... read more
Dr. Allen’s textbook covers the most notable fundamental theories of Personality Psychology. It provides a history of theories of psychology with terminology and a glossary of terms at the end of each chapter. The embedded videos (in the electronic version) on theories of personality makes the format easy to follow and keeps the reader engaged in the learning process.
The text appears to be unbiased and covers content from all types of theories of psychology inclusive of different psychologists. The information provided on Freud’s psychodynamic theory was explained in a clear non-confusing manner with the use of tables and illustrations. The author's information appears to be accurate and of best use to the modern day academic scholar.
This text can be best utilized in an advanced degree program of psychology, perhaps as a primary text for a course specifically on personality. It could also be considered for use as a supplemental text for other advanced programs of study (i.e. social work) to complement the existing course material that incorporates clinical diagnosis. The chapter on Personality Disorders (Chp 9.) is very informative and can be used to teach the advanced level student on the clinical diagnosis of personality disorders as the DSM-V is referenced. The references and video links provide a broader explanation of the content and is up to date and engaging.
A glossary of terms used each chapter can be found at the end of each section(chapter). The terms are also highlighted with links to additional information on the use of the word in the field of psychology. The language at a professional advanced level and is current with scientific application.
The terminology is consistent with current language used in personality psychology. The author does an excellent job with including a chapter on Maslow’s hierarchy with a final chapter on Happiness. The author’s ability educate the reader about personality theories but also offer subtle content to assist the reader with engaging in the reflection of personality in itself, was interesting. The self-reporting scale on Happiness is a tool that can be used by students as an activity of reflection in a advanced course.
The modularity of text was most impressive. The subheadings and course sections were easy to read and organized. It was very colorful and visually appealing. The electronic version of the text is highly recommended as it offers additional vocabulary and references at the end of the chapter for further review and research.
The topics in the text were clear. The chapter 10 on Yoga and Buddhism offers information from a spiritual context that may often times is not typically taught as a core subject area in a psychology or social work program. It offers the history of Buddhism and attempts to incorporate spirituality in a clear, logical fashion.
This book is user friendly and visually appealing. The book offers a significant amount of visual aids that contain additional information on the content and keeps the reader engaged in the material covered. It was very easy to navigate and did not appear to be a challenge to follow. The print was appropriate for a college scholar as well as an advanced practitioner.
No grammatical areas were found.
The text could benefit from information on diversity and culture. I was unable to locate information about personality psychology in the Asian, African-American, Hispanic/Latino culture as well as other ethnicities and cultures. More information in this area is recommended (statistics, charts, implications for practice).
A consideration of this book for a foundation course in psychology is recommended. As a professor of social work, this text would be better suited as a supplemental text for an advanced practice course or as an elective course in social work.
Table of Contents
- 1 Personality Traits
- 2 Personality Stability
- 3 Personality Assessment
- 4 Sigmund Freud, Karen Horney, Nancy Chodorow: Viewpoints on Psychodynamic Theory
- 5 Carl Jung
- 6 Humanistic and Existential Theory: Frankl, Rogers, and Maslow
- 7 The Nature-Nurture Question
- 8 Self-Regulation and Conscientiousness
- 9 Personality Disorders
- 10 Happiness: The Science of Subjective Well-Being
- 11 Yoga, Buddhism, Personality and Non-Personality
About the Book
This open access textbook was developed as an upper division undergraduate textbook for theories of personality. Its intended audience are students from Portland State University enrolled in Psychology 432 Personality course. The chapters are shorter than some personality textbooks and in this particular course Psy 432 the textbook is combined with other readings including scientific articles on personality. This open access textbook may be of interest to other courses interested in teaching about theory and research on personality.
About the Contributors
Chris Allen, Portland State University