Imagine … Fun? Part 1

Elizabeth Rund

Students may come to Kent State expecting to fulfill the requirements for their major. But for some, the college experience involves trying something new — regardless of requirements.

Finally, a class with a little personality — or maybe a lot.

The class is listed in the course catalog simply as “Personality,” and as one might imagine, it encompasses many things.

“It is something that people can relate to — we are all lay psychologists and make fundamental judgments about people all the time,” said Nina Rytwinski, a clinical psychology graduate student who has been teaching the course for the last two semesters.

The class examines personalities both collectively and in groups: For example, comparing introverts (those who are low-key and keep mainly to themselves) and extroverts (those who are very open and outgoing).

A major question brought up in the class: When people make judgments about someone else’s personality, are they accurate?

When examining another person’s personality, Rytwinski said there are many things to consider. The person’s traits could be misinterpreted; for instance, a quiet person in class could have the appearance of being stuck-up.

She also said accuracy in judging a personality can affect how a person treats others, as well as what is expected of that person. For example, some students with the “skater” or “slacker” image are often not expected to work or do well in school.

The class consists of two sections. Both sections meet in Kent Hall, but on alternate days with one section meeting Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and the other meeting Tuesday and Thursday.

Although the class draws a majority of psychology students, such as junior Mitchell Harmon, all students are encouraged to attend.

“I took the class because I was interested in the personality aspect of psychology,” Harmon said. “It’s only a few weeks in, but the class is worth taking.”

Rytwinski hopes the class will have practical applications for all her students.

“I hope that students come out of the class with the understanding of what a person’s basic personality is,” Rytwinski said. “It will help you work with and get along with people in the real world.”

Contact features correspondent Elizabeth Rund at [email protected].