The focus of the nomothetic approach is to obtain objective knowledge through scientific methods. The nomothetic approach to personality looks at what people have in common with each other. Conclusion From these examples we can see that the difference between a nomothetic and an idiographic approach is not just a question of what the psychologist wants to discover but also of the methods used. This is an example where the two approaches have both contributed to a theory, and thus demonstrated that perhaps it is best that the two approaches are considered complimentary, rather than competing. It describes the effort to derive laws that explain or categories of phenomena, in general. In a Q-sort the number of cards can be varied as can the number of piles and the type of question e. On the other hand each patient represents a new challenge for therapy with a configuration of defense mechanisms that is all their own and an illness that derives from unique childhood experiences.
For example, if one wanted to develop a robust understanding of the many and varied effects of racism on Black people, one would be wise to take a nomothetic approach to studying the and the , among other things that can be quantified and measured in large number. That is to say in establishing laws or generalizations. Her friend Diana is different, though. However the case study of Clive Wearing has also provided further support for this theory. Instead of psychometric tests, the idiographic approach focuses on case studies, interviews, and observations of the person.
The distinction hails from the German philosopher Wilhelm , and provoked an acrimonious debate the so-called Methodenstreit in late nineteenth-century and , between proponents of generalizing and individualizing approaches to the social, historical, and cultural sciences. Hence quantitive methods of investigation are used, to try and produce statistically significant results. The fact that she's quiet with people she doesn't know and talkative with people she does is just one of the things that idiographic theorists would look at. Due to this, it has helped psychology become more scientific by developing theories that can be empirically tested. In , nomothetic propositions are law stricto sensu.
In the beginning, I was confused about the application of the two methods; however, reading the replies clarified the issue. The focus of the nomothetic approach is to obtain objective knowledge through scientific methods. Thank you for the wonderful blog, which compared and contrasted the research methods of nomothetic and idiographic. Idiographic research focuses on the uniqueness of the individual rather than developing theories of behavior than can be generalized to the population. In anthropology, nomothetic refers to the use of generalization rather than specific properties in the context of a group as an entity. There are also broad differences between theoretical perspectives.
You learn to write better assignments and get higher examination grades by finding out how well or how badly you did last time and why. A key debate, is the one between the two research methods: nomothetic and idiographic. Which is one of the key criteria of a science. You have mentioned the idea that there are reasons why it is better using one not the other however for the reader you have to look back and find out where they are. They prefer to look at what is unique in each individual, in a method known as the idiographic approach to psychology. Due to this, it has helped psychology become more scientific by developing theories that can be empirically tested.
Since I am new to the research field I found your information extremely helpful in understanding the similarities and differences of these methods. It will also briefly introduce some of the most prestigious theories associated with this ideology. In the past 20 years a growing consensus has begun to emerge about what those traits are. Personality psychologists study something that is supposedly unique to each of us, yet also something we all have. Nevertheless, if certain act or human behaviour is punished by taking something pleasant or giving an individual something unpleasant then person is unlikely to repeat the act or behaviour.
Nomothetic describes the study of classes or cohorts of individuals. This approach nestles within the study of individual differences and therefore relies on Case Study research. Nomothetic researchers study traits, which are assumed to have the same psychological effects for everyone; individual differences are accounted for as variations along a commonly shared scale for each measurable trait or quality. The subsequent laws that are created can be categorised into three kinds: classifying people into groups, establishing principles and establishing dimensions. You raised some good questions and your argument was balanced, highlighting the poistives and negatives for each and using evidence to support it. Idiographic Approach Psychologists adopting idiographic perspective are concerned with understanding the uniqueness of individuals and the development of the self concept.
However the case study of Clive Wearing has also provided further support for this theory. I wish the people that replied shared more information on the subject and less information on editing. I appreciate you sharing your insight and knowledge on the subject. In psychology, nomothetic measures are contrasted to or measures, where nomothetic measures are measures that are observed on a relatively large sample and have a more general outlook while the idiographic approach is relating to a more singular case as is done in case studies. Thanks for the feed back about the ideographic approach i understand the concept much better now.