Psychology of Character Development

By Robert J. Havighurst; Ruth Cooper et al. | Go to book overview

IV
Personality and character

The Assessment of Character

As each person was studied and rated by the research team, be or she was assessed on all five character-type dimensions, in order to determine what proportion of his character structure pertained to each type. Each type was defined on a ten-point scale, intended to represent the full range to be found among sixteen-year-olds in the general U.S. population. The detailed rating instructions are described in the Appendix, pp. 220-236.

To assign a person a score on a given type, it was decided that there must be evidence of behaviorally effective motivation of the kind described for that type. For example, in their dreams most people reveal some thoroughly amoral impulses-and sometimes in waking fantasy. If these were never permitted to affect their behavior, however, in ways obvious or subtle, then no degree of amorality could properly be ascribed to them. The character types were defined mainly in terms of motivation, in order to describe why a person

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