The Historical Development of Personality Assessment

  • Yossef S. Ben-Porath
  • James N. Butcher
Part of the Applied Clinical Psychology book series (NSSB)

Abstract

Understanding and predicting other people’s behavior have been important tasks in human interaction for as long as human beings have been social animals. Thus, our ancestors were likely practicing one form or another of personality assessment long before any written records of such activities were kept. Over the course of human evolution, the adaptive benefits of being able to understand and predict the behavior of both friends and foes would clearly have created an evolutionary advantage for those who possessed the ability to assess these important characteristics. This evolutionary process has resulted in a natural tendency for humans to assess the personalities of those with whom they come into contact. As humankind has developed and advanced, so have the means by which people assess each other’s personalities. Early primitive and intuitive ways gave way to more sophisticated and systematic attempts to assess, characterize, and predict human behavior.

Keywords

Item Response Theory Personality Assessment Personality Test Projective Technique Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yossef S. Ben-Porath
    • 1
  • James N. Butcher
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyKent State UniversityKentUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyUniversity of MinnesotaMinneapolisUSA

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