Hello! Caitlin Powell from Psychological Science here. I’m in my second year of teaching at Georgia College, and I completed my graduate work at University of Kentucky. I know this is a little late to the game, but I’m really excited about using this group as an opportunity to design my course about Theories of Personality. Thus far, the three issues that I’ve decided to focus on are as follows:
1.) As part of the class, students will learn more about Personality Disorders. As part of this, I will arrange for speakers from the community to talk about their experiences with Personality Disorders — both mental health providers, as well as individuals that have struggled with a PD.
2.) Narcissism is a “hot topic” in Psychological research, with data showing that in the past two decades, narcissism rates are on the rise in the USA, especially among college students. As part of the course, I plan on having an in-depth discussion about why this phenomenon exists, what can be done (if anything) to reverse the tide, and will ask students to “look in the mirror” in order to confront and examine these tendencies in themselves.
3.) Another application of the material would be in the realm of Psychology and Law. Once students learn about how Personality characteristics and disorders develop, they can use this information to better understand how these factors can sometimes contribute to criminal behavior — and begin to parse apart the thorny issues involved in deciding competency for trial, responsibility for actions, and jury perceptions of guilt or innocence.
There are other components of the class that will focus more on theories of personality, as well as having students complete a “Personality Inventory” report about their own traits and characteristics, but these are the things I came up with in terms of stretching the boundaries and having them think about how this material relates to the world around them.