Kelleys Cube Modeltheory



KELLY'S PERSONAL CONSTRUCT THEORY. = role-construct theory. The American psychologist George A. Kelly (19051967) developed the personal construct theory of personality, which emphasizes the ways in which individuals interpret or construe events, and advances the viewpoint that each person unwittingly takes the role of "scientist" by observing events, formulating concepts to organize phenomena, and attempting to predict future events (cf., Kelly's fundamental postulate - the conjecture that behavior is determined and directed by the way in which people construe their worlds and reality). According to Kelly, people conduct mental "miniexperiments" in order to interpret and understand their own experiences. In this sense, people are actively engaged in the construction of their own subjective worlds, and one's perceptual processes are directed by the way one anticipates future events. The theory states that people are active and future-oriented rather than passive or merely reactive, that they develop certain concepts, categories, and constructs that they use to describe themselves, and that a concept such as hostility may be defined as a continuing and futile effort to find positive evidence for something that has already been recognized as a failure. Kelly's theory has two key features: it deals both with change and stability - including the aspects of process and structure in the individual; and it focuses on the uniqueness of the person (idiographic) as well as on the characteristics and processes that are common to all people (nomothetic). Kelly's major theoretical concept is the construct, which refers to a bipolar way of interpreting and perceiving events. For instance, the construct/dimension of "good-bad" is used often by individuals as they assess events and other people. Examples of other constructs - where the bipolar terms are not necessarily the logical opposite of each other - are "receive-give," "take-give," "unassertive-assertive," "hate-love," and "lust-love." When a construct becomes part of an individual's cognitive structure, it may be applied to anything or anyone. Kelly distinguishes among different types of constructs: core constructs (such as "weak-strong") versus peripheral constructs (such as "humorous-serious"); verbal versus preverbal constructs and superordinate versus subordinate constructs. An individual's personal constructs are organized to form a construct system ranging from a simple system (containing only one or two levels of organization) to a complex system (containing multiple levels of organization). Complex construct systems allow greater differentiation and detailed predictions in one's perception of the world, whereas simple construct systems indicate that the person lumps all people and things into a few categories such as "good-bad" or "successful-unsuccessful" where the person's predictions are the same without regard to the situation or circumstances. An individual's personal construct system may be assessed by Kelly's "Role Construct Repertory Test" (or Rep Test). Interpreting the results from this test is a subjective and laborious process because it is as much a projective test as a rating scale. In the absence of an objective scoring system, the Rep Test has not been widely used for either clinical or research purposes, and its validity is largely unknown. Although Kelly influenced later personality theorists, the theory of personal constructs has advanced little since its initial development. Originally, Kelly's theory was set down in a formal postulate fashion with 11 corollaries in his 1955 book, and it is difficult to classify or contrast it with other approaches. L. Sechrest (1977) describes Kelly's theory as having many second cousins, but no siblings. Kelly's ideas arose from his clinical experience rather than from experimental research or systematic correlational studies, and there is relatively little current research based on Kelly's theory that is reported in the psychological literature. See also FESTINGER'S COGNITIVE DISSONANCE THEORY; IDIO-GRAPHIC/NOMOTHETIC LAWS; PERSONALITY THEORIES. REFERENCES

Kelly, G. A. (1955). The psychology of personal constructs. New York: Norton.

New York: Norton. Sechrest, L. (1977). Personal constructs theory. In R. J. Corsini (Ed.), Current personality theories. Itasca, IL: Peacock.

Pervin, L. (1996). The science of personality. New York: Wiley.

KENNARD PRINCIPLE. The American physician Margaret A. Kennard (1899-1976) was a pioneer in the experimental study of "sparing" and "recovery" of function in organisms. Her most famous studies were performed on monkeys and apes at Yale University during the late 1930s and early 1940s. In her investigations, she described the behavioral effects of brain damage on infantile, juvenile, and older primates, and drew attention to the importance of developmental state at the time of neural insult. Kennard also conducted experiments showing that even adult primates may exhibit significant recovery of function, especially if brain lesions are made in stages rather than all at once. The Kennard principle states that it is easier to recover from brain damage if the individual is young at the time of the damage than if the damage occurs later in life; for many years, the idea persisted in the medical field that equivalent brain damage to a child and an adult would lead to less problems in a child than in the adult. Ken-nard's principle suggests that a child's brain, while evolving/developing, exhibits "neuro-plasticity," enabling it to work around, or adapt to, organic brain damage. However, many recent studies indicate that the Kennard principle is inaccurate and that, in reality, the outcome for children suffering traumatic brain injury/insult may be far worse than the outcome for an equally injured adult. See also


Kennard, M. A. (1936). Age and other factors in motor recovery from precentral lesions in monkeys. American Journal of Physiology, 115, 138-146. Kennard, M. A. (1940). Relation of age to motor impairment in man and subhuman primates. Archives of Neurology and Psychiatry, 44, 377-397. Schneider, G. E. (1979). Is it really better to have your brain lesion early: A revision of the "Kennard principle." Neuropsychology, 17, 557-583. Finger, S., & Wolf, C. (1988). The "Kennard effect" before Kennard: The early history of age and brain lesions. Archives of Neurology, 45, 1136-1142. Webb, C., Rose, F., Johnson, D., & Attree, E.

(1996). Age and recovery from brain injury: Clinical opinions and experimental evidence. Brain Injury, 10, 303-310.


Brain Blaster

Brain Blaster

Have you ever been envious of people who seem to have no end of clever ideas, who are able to think quickly in any situation, or who seem to have flawless memories? Could it be that they're just born smarter or quicker than the rest of us? Or are there some secrets that they might know that we don't?

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