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First Question:

  • Based on what you’ve learned about personality, which traits could you imagine being especially problematic when displayed at extreme levels? Is it only at “high” levels that things become a concern, or could we see problems at low levels as well?

    In your answer, consider some of the specific effects or ways in which extreme manifestations lead to real-life negative outcomes.

Second Question:

  • Is mental illness or mental disorder in general distinct from personality?

    For example, if a person is diagnosed with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), such that they exhibit a heightened reactivity to stress, would we consider this a personality change, an increase in neuroticism, or simply a symptom of the psychological disorder? (In this example, it may be helpful to consider that in these circumstances, the person in question would in fact likely score higher on a self-report measure of neuroticism.) People diagnosed with the major depressive disorder would similarly score higher on neuroticism, but does that score reflect their personality or the disorder?

    If personality and mental illness are in fact distinct, where exactly should we draw the line? And why is this important?

Please answer these two questions separately. One page for each question.