Psychology (PSYC) 356

Introduction to Personality Theories and Issues (Revision 5)

PSYC 356

Revision 5 is closed, see current version

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Delivery Mode: Individualized study online

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Social Science

Prerequisite: PSYC 289 and PSYC 290 are strongly recommended.

Faculty: Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

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PSYC 356 has a Challenge for Credit option.

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This course surveys the field of personality from a scientific perspective. The key theorists and concepts associated with each perspective are highlighted, along with the strengths and limitations of that approach.


  • Unit 1: Introduction to Personality Theory
  • Unit 2: Freud: Psychoanalysis
  • Unit 3: Adler: Individual Psychology
  • Unit 4: Jung: Analytical Psychology
  • Unit 5: Klein: Object Relations Theory
  • Unit 6: Horney: Psychoanalytic Social Theory
  • Unit 7: Fromm: Humanistic Psychoanalysis
  • Unit 8: Sullivan: Interpersonal Theory
  • Unit 9: Erikson: Post-Freudian Theory
  • Unit 10: Maslow: Holistic-Dynamic Theory
  • Unit 11: Rogers: Person-Centered Theory
  • Unit 12: May: Existential Psychology
  • Unit 13: Allport: Psychology of the Individual
  • Unit 14: Eysenck, McCrae, and Costa's Factor and Trait Theories
  • Unit 15: Skinner: Behavioral Analysis
  • Unit 16: Bandura: Social Cognitive Theory
  • Unit 17: Rotter and Mischel: Cognitive Social Learning Theory
  • Unit 18: Kelly: Psychology of Personal Constructs


To receive credit for the course, you must complete all assignments, receive a grade of 50 percent or better on the final exam and a composite course grade of at least “D” (50 percent). The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Activity Weighting
5 Quizzes (5% each) 25%
Term Paper 35%
Final Exam 40%
Total 100%

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


Feist, J., & Feist, G. J. (2009). Theories of personality (8th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill.

Other Materials

Other course materials include a student manual and workbook available online.

Challenge for Credit Course Overview

The Challenge for Credit process allows students to demonstrate that they have acquired a command of the general subject matter, knowledge, intellectual and/or other skills that would normally be found in a university level course.

Full information for the Challenge for Credit can be found in the Undergraduate Calendar.

Challenge Evaluation

To receive credit for the PSYC 356 challenge registration, you must achieve a grade of at least “D” (50 percent) on the examination.

Undergraduate Challenge for Credit Course Registration Form

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 5, November 28, 2008.

View previous syllabus