Personality Pedagogy Newsletter Volume 7, Number 1, September, 2012

Hello and welcome to the seventy-third Personality Pedagogy newsletter highlighting what’s new at For more about the links below and approximately 2,582 other interesting links related to personality, please visit:

By now, many of us are fully into the swing of the new school year and another fall semester. At my school, many classes are having their first round of exams. For many students, this means hunkering down to the real work of the semester. For many faculty, it means lagging energy for prep work or temptation of the outdoors or other fall fun-related activities. We think the links below may be just the thing to lure your attention back into teaching personality!

This month we hit upon a web page of Mark Leary, a personality psychologist who has created a number of interesting scales, which he makes freely available on his website. We’ve added links to impostorism, propensity to blush, fear of negative evaluation, the need to belong, social physique anxiety, and others, bring our total number of valid and reliable personality tests to nearly 100, the largest collection anywhere on the web. To tie into this trove of materials, we’re revisiting one of our favorite links which introduces students to the Barnum Effect.

As ever, please pass this newsletter on to interested colleagues and invite them to sign up for future issues and to visit the home of Personality Pedagogy: Remember, you can view the current newsletter, comment on newsletters, re-read what you missed in previous newsletters, or search all newsletters by checking out our blog at and you can even receive Personality Pedagogy newsletters via RSS feed as soon as they are posted, by clicking on the “RSS-posts” button on the bottom right.


Marianne Miserandino
miserandino “at” arcadia “dot” edu

1. The Personality Pedagogy Monthly Newsletter

Sign up here to receive this newsletter delivered to your e-mail inbox once a month! We promise never to share your information with anybody else or to use it for any other purpose than “Personality Pedagogy”.

2. Five Keys to Enhancing Your Emotional Intelligence

Emotional Intelligence is “absolutely essential in the formation, development, maintenance, and enhancement of close personal relationships”. Find out how to increase your IQ using these five suggestions from Preston Ni for “Psychology Today”, January 2012.

3. Freud’s Not Dead; He’s Just Really Hard to Find

While traditional psychoanalysis does not qualify as an evidence-based treatment, this does not mean that Freud is dead according to Susan Krauss Whitbourne, for “Psychology Today”, May 2012.

4. Reading the Red Book: How C. G. Jung Salvaged His Soul

According to Stephen A. Diamond, “C.G. Jung’s  Red Book  begins as a detailed log of one man’s personal, lonely “nekyia” or night sea journey to the underworld and ends with his heroic return to the outer world renewed, much like a latter day Dante, Jonah or Ulysses. This, as he came to understand, is an excellent description of what real psychotherapy is or can be all about.” From “Psychology Today”, February 2011.

5. Phineas Gage For the 21st Century

A 24-year old Brazilian construction worker survived after a 6-foot metal bar fell from above and pierced his head according to this article from the Associated Press which ran August 17, 2012. Click here for a video version of the story (50 seconds).

6. Psychology’s Tall Tales: The Real Story of Phineas Gage

From the website: “Graduate student instructors can demonstrate the importance of critical thinking by taking a closer look at the tales of Kitty Genovese and Phineas Gage.” According to some psychologists and historians, Phineas Gage was not as impaired as was once thought, and was, in fact, able to hold down a steady job. (And, in case you were wondering, witnesses claim to have called the police and helped Genovese.)

7. TOPSS Lesson Plan Revised: Biological Bases of Behavior

Teaching of Psychology in the Secondary School (TOPSS) and the APA Education Directorate are pleased to announce a newly revised lesson plan on Biological Bases of Behavior. The lesson plan includes lessons on the brain and neural function, the neuron, the organization of the nervous system, localization of function of the brain, lateralization of function of the brain, the endocrine system, and behavioral genetics.  Five teaching activities are included in the unit plan, and two online modules aligned to the unit are also available through the website above, one on key points to remember in biopsychology and one of classroom demonstrations for the unit. Note: You must be a member of TOPSS to access the materials.

8. Gender: Philip Zimbardo: The Demise of Guys?

In this TED talk Psychologist Philip Zimbardo asks, “Why are boys struggling?” He shares some stats (lower graduation rates, greater worries about intimacy and relationships) and suggests a few reasons, and challenges the TED community to think about solutions. (Posted August 2011. Duration: 4:47)

9. Sexist Vintage Ads

The Huffington Post presents this slide show of 18 “cringe-worthy vintage ads targeting married couples.” A good way to start out a discussion of gender differences by getting students to think about what people once believed men and women to be like and discussing the evidence (or lack thereof) for some of these out-dated images.

10. Interaction Anxiousness

From Leary, M. R. (1983). Social anxiousness: The construct and its measurement. “Journal of Personality Assessment, 47”, 66-75.

11. Brief Fear of Negative Evaluation

From Leary, M. R. (1983). A brief version of the Fear of Negative Evaluation Scale. “Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 9”, 371-376.

12. Need to Belong

From Leary, M. R., Kelly, K. M., Cottrell, C. A., & Schreindorfer, L. S. (2007). Individual differences in the need to belong: Mapping the nomological network. Unpublished manuscript, Duke University.

13. Blushing Propensity

From Leary, M. R., & Meadows, S. (1991). Predictors, elicitors, and concomitants of social blushing. “Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 60”, 254-262.

14. Hurt Feelings

From Leary, M. R., & Springer, C. (2001). Hurt feelings: The neglected emotion. In R. M. Kowalski (Ed.), Aversive behaviors and relational transgressions. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

15. Impostorism

From Leary, M. R., Patton, K., Orlando, A., & Funk, W. W. (2000). The impostor phenomenon: Self-perceptions, reflected appraisals, and interpersonal strategies. “Journal of Personality, 68”, 725-756.

16. Social Physique Anxiety

From Hart, E. A., Leary, M. R., & Rejeski, W. J. (1989). The measurement of social physique anxiety. “Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 11”, 94-104.

17. Favorite Link Revisited: The Barnum Effect

Take this test to remind yourself why good personality tests should provide specific feedback…and why horoscopes are so much fun! This online test of 47 questions plus some background demographics gives the appearance of a legitimate personality test. Respondents receive the typical Barnum feedback and rate how accurate it is. The beauty of this on-line version is that students can change some of their answers and see that their description never changes. In the words of Prof. Birnbaum at Fullerton State who developed this page, “Self-validation is no validation” according to the explanation given here.


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