The Trait Pleasure-Displeasure (or Adjustment-Maladjustment) Scale and Software

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Trait Pleasure-Displeasure Defined
Trait pleasure-displeasure refers to a person's characteristic or average level of pleasure-displeasure over time and across a representative variety of life situations. Alternatively, it can be viewed as an individual's predisposition or inclination to respond with pleasure versus displeasure in various settings. The Trait Pleasure-displeasure Scale provides an assessment of the degree of prevalence, in a person, of positive affective states over negative ones. Within Mehrabian's (1978, 1980, 1987, 1991, 1995) temperament model, Trait Pleasure-displeasure is the primary temperament dimension distinguishing psychological adjustment and health versus maladjustment and dysfunction.

Software for Administring & Scoring the Trait Pleasure-Displeasure Scale
Software for administering, scoring, and interpreting the Trait Pleasure-Displeasure Scale is available within a larger package of software that includes all three PAD (Pleasure, Dominance, Arousability) scales. The software runs on IBM-compatible machines and, for Trait Pleasure, provides (a) total score, equivalent percentile score, equivalent z-score, and interpretation of these scores for each person tested and (b) a database of all three scores (total, percentile, z-score) for all individuals tested. The software is easy to use and is password protected so that the Administrator can control access to the database of results. In this way, individuals being tested cannot have access to the results, unless the Administrator chooses to report such results to them.

Detailed Description of the PAD Temperament Software
Scale Description
The Trait Pleasure-displeasure Scale currently in use (Mehrabian, 1994) is the most recent and best version of the Trait Pleasure Scale originally developed by Mehrabian (1978). The present version contains 22 items. For each item, subjects place a check-mark in one of nine spaces separating two adjectives to indicate how they feel in general.

The Trait Pleasure-displeasure Scale is intended primarily for experimental use. In the event it is used in clinical or applied settings, it is strongly advisable that findings based on the present instrument be checked against additional data from alternative tests and interview materials.

Validity data:
Mehrabian's (1996) review article contains considerable validity information on the Trait Pleasure Scale. The Trait Pleasure-displeasure Scale was found to have significant positive correlations with the following personality scales that assess psychological adjustment in interpersonal relationships: Affiliation, Extroversion, Nurturance, Succorance, and Emotional Empathy (Mehrabian & O'Reilly, 1980). The Trait Pleasure Scale also correlated positively with Sentience (i.e., a sensuous quality) and with Achievement (Mehrabian & O'Reilly, 1980).

The Trait Pleasure Scale consistently exhibited significant negative correlations with the following measures of psychological maladjustment: Neuroticism, Trait Anxiety, Defendence (or Defensiveness), Aggression (or Hostility) (Mehrabian, 1995-96; Mehrabian & O'Reilly, 1980), and Depression (Mehrabian, 1995-96; Mehrabian & Bernath, 1991).

Mehrabian, A. (1978). Measures of individual differences in temperament. Educational and Psychological Measurement, vol. 38, pp. 1105-1117.

Mehrabian, A. (1980). Basic dimensions for a general psychological theory: Implications for personality, social, environmental, and developmental studies. Oelgeschlager, Gunn & Hain, Cambridge, MA.

Mehrabian, A. (1987). Eating characteristics and temperament: General measures and interrelationships. Springer-Verlag, New York.

Mehrabian, A. (1991). Outline of a general emotion-based theory of temperament. In J. Strelau and A. Angleitner (Eds.), Explorations in temperament: International perspectives on theory and measurement (pp. 75-86). Plenum Press, New York.

Mehrabian, A. (1994). Manual for the Trait Pleasure- displeasure Scale. (Available from Albert Mehrabian, 1130 Alta Mesa Road, Monterey, CA, USA 93940).

Mehrabian, A. (1995). Relationships among three general approaches to personality description. Journal of Psychology, vol. 129, pp. 565-581.

Mehrabian, A. (1995-96). Distinguishing depression and trait anxiety in terms of basic dimensions of temperament. Imagination, Cognition and Personality, vol. 15, pp. 133-144.

Mehrabian, A. (1996). Pleasure-arousal-dominance: A general framework for describing and measuring individual differences in temperament. Current Psychology, vol. 14, pp. 261-292.

Mehrabian, A., & Bernath, M.S. (1991). Factorial composition of commonly used self-report depression inventories: Relationships with basic dimensions of temperament. Journal of Research in Personality, vol. 25, pp. 262-275.

Mehrabian, A., & O'Reilly, E. (1980). Analysis of personality measures in terms of basic dimensions of temperament. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, vol. 38, pp. 492-503.

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