Personality Theorist- George Kelly Abstract This paper aims to highlight the works of George A. Kelly. Kelly made fundamental break through the field of psychology throught his Personal Construct Theory. This theory helps explain the behavious of people and the meanings which they attach to the events and daily activities…
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(1905-1967) was a very renowned American psychologist. Born in Perth, Kansas, Kelly belonged to a very strict religious family. They were constantly on the move from one area to another. As a result much of the schooling which he had was mostly either home or from a variety of schools. Finally, when he was thirteen he was sent to a boarding school in Wichita. He studied for three years at Friends University and a final year at Park College, graduating with a degree in Physics and Mathematics. However, during these years Kelly’s interest started moving towards debates and discussions, developing into a popular orator. Later he studied at a variety of institutions such as Universities of Kansas, Minnesota, and Edinburgh, before graduating with a Ph. D. in psychology from University of Iowa in 1931. After completing his education Kelly entered the job market during the time of the Great Depression. During this time period he worked at Fort Hays Kansas State College and developed his theory and techniques. Kelly worked hard on his clinic and it was then when he developed most of his future ideas. When the Second World War broke out Kelly accepted a post in Aviation psychology branch of the US Navy and served there throughout the war. After the war he spent some time teaching in the University of Maryland. In 1946 he joined Ohio State University where he made important contributions to his theory. Because of his important theoretical contributions and hard work in the profession of clinical psychology, Kelly was made the president of clinical and consulting divisions of American Psychological Association for 1954-55 and 1956-7. In 1965, he started research in Brandeis University and died soon after in March 1967. The Theory Kelly developed a theory of personality known as the Personal Construct theory. It is this theory which became the foundation of the field Personal Construct Psychology. The main focus of this theory is the way in which individuals construct and reconstruct the meanings of their lives. This theory was first founded in 1955 discussed in detail in his book, ‘The Psychology of Personal Constructs.’ Although the implementation of this theory has expanded over the years, it still predominantly focuses on individuals, families and social groups. The prime aspect or the foundation idea of Kelly’s theory is that people are like scientists. “A person's processes are psychologically channelized by the way in which he anticipates events.” (Kelly, 1955, p.46) . This means that people to create the meaning of things or events themselves. They are constantly doing this so efficiently that according to Kelly they are like scientists constructing meanings. Thus, the individuals are making hypotheses which are called as constructs. What are constructs? Constructs are the ideas or meanings which people attest to the events or things in the society. They differ from person to person. These constructs indicate the meaning which the individual construct of events or happenings of the surroundings. Constructs also indicate the view a person is likely to construe of a certain event. Thus, these define the individual himself and indicates how his brain functions like a scientist. A construct has two extreme points like happy-sad etc. An individual normally places eventsor people between these scales and retains such ideas about them. These constructs are formed in the very early stages of life and
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