You are not currently logged in. Please create an account or log in to view the full course.

Issues and Debates – Individual Versus Situational Factors

1. Individual Versus Situational Factors

This is the course trailer. Please create an account or log in to view this lecture.

  • Description
  • Cite

About this Lecture


In this lecture, we think about what drives behaviour, focusing in particular on: (i) an introduction to what is meant by an individual compared to a situational factor; (ii) the tendency for people to focus on individual factors when hypothesising about another person’s behaviour; (iii) the historic focus on individual factors in psychology, including Wundt’s introspection and Freud’s psychodynamic theory; (iv) research claiming to have calculated the percentage of behaviour that personality and situational factors account for; (v) Lewin’s equation, which proposes that it is the interaction between situation and personality factors which has the greatest impact on behaviour.


In this course, Dr Ayoub Bouguettaya (University of Birmingham) explores the individual versus situational factors debate. In the first lecture, we think about what drives behaviour and the tendency to focus on internal/individual factors when evaluating a person’s behaviour. In the second lecture, we think about the doctrines of traits and situationism, as well as trait activation theory. In the third lecture, we think about how personality acts as a determinant of behaviour and how a trait is defined. Next, we think about social situations and the tendencies of many people to act in similar ways when confronted with certain situations. In the fifth and final lecture, we think about some key questions which surround the individual versus situational factor debate, including whether personality itself is a Western construct.


Dr Ayoub Bouguettaya is a lecturer in the School of Psychology at the University of Birmingham. Dr Bouguettaya’s research interests are in social psychology and how knowledge from that field can be applied to others, particularly health, including how we can apply social identity theory to societal problems, as well as investigating the different perspectives one might take on those issues. Some of Dr Bouguettaya’s recent publications include 'The relationship between gambling advertising and gambling attitudes, intentions and behaviours: a critical and meta-analytic review' (2020) and 'The Effect of a Food Addiction Explanation Model for Weight Control and Obesity on Weight Stigma' (2020).

Cite this Lecture

APA style

Bouguettaya, A. (2022, March 17). Issues and Debates – Individual Versus Situational Factors - Individual Versus Situational Factors [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

Bouguettaya, A. "Issues and Debates – Individual Versus Situational Factors – Individual Versus Situational Factors." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 17 Mar 2022,

Image Credits