PPR Method
Valuation Theory
Achievement Motivation Test

Developed Concepts

My work developed through four phases. Achievement Motivation, the Self-Confrontation Method, the Dialogical Self Theory, and the Democratic Self. 

25 years Valuation Theory. Artist: Gwendolijn Koppert

The Democratic Self

Further development of Dialogical Self Theory at the interface of self and society.

  • Basic idea: self as a society of mind has the potential of functioning as a democratic society of mind and contributes to democracy of the society at large.

  • A model is presented with three levels of inclusiveness: personal level (I as individual), social level (I as group member) and global level (I as human), with the self moving between the levels in a dialogical way.

  • The democratic self functions in a field of tension between dialogue and social power.

 

The Dialogical Self Theory

Dialogical Self Theory, as published in Hermans’ and Kempen’s book “The dialogical self: Meaning as movement” (1993) emerged from working with valuation theory and the self-confrontation method in theory and practice and from a historical analysis of the psychological and novelistic literature.

  • Starting point: The contrasting philosophical thoughts of  Descartes and VicoConsiders the self as multivoiced and dialogical – Is inspired by James’s psychology of the self and the Russian literary scholar Mikhail Bakhtin who introduced the concept “polyphonic novel” after an analysis of the works of Dostoyevsky

  • Emphasizes not only the role of human interchange but also the impact of social power

  • For a detailed exposition see the book The Dialogical Self: Meaning as Movement

 

The Personal Position Repertoire (PPR) Method

  • Assessment instrument deviced for the investigation of a person’s position repertoire.

  • Based on Dialogical Self theory – The PPR-method aims at the study of the content and organization of the personal position repertoire

  • The content of the repertoire refers to an overview of internal positions (e.g. I as a mother, I as an ambitious worker, I as an enjoyer of life) and external positions (e.g., My parents, my children, my husband, my friends, my enemy). This list of internal and external positions can be constructed in cooperation with the respondent. For research purposes, the PPR-method may be standardized so that comparisons between different respondents are facilitated

  • For the study of the organization of the repertoire a matrix is used in which the rows represent internal positions and the columns external positions. In the entries of the matrix the respondent indicates (with a 0-5 scale) to which extent a particular internal position is prominent in relation to a particular external position. On the basis of this matrix some indices are calculated which, in their combination, reveal central features of the organization of the repertoire A detailed exposition of the PPR-method, including theoretical backgrounds and illustrations with actual cases, is provided in Hermans, H.J.M. (2001), The construction of a personal position repertoire: Method and practice. Culture & Psychology, 7 (3), 323-365. This article shows also how the PPR-method can be combined with theSelf-Confrontation Method (SCM). The article is part of a special issue on the dialogical self (see Special Issues on the Dialogical Self), in which some commentary articles by colleagues from different countries are included. The Personal Position Repertoire (PPR) method was developed with the support and contribution of Els Hermans-Jansen who applied the method her psychotherapeutic practice. 

 

The Self-Confrontation Method

Valuation Theory

  • A narrative theory about meaning construction and reconstruction

  • Rooted in contextualism (in Pepper’s sense)

  • Basic metaphor: The self as motivated storyteller

  • As storytelling the self is dialogical and multivoiced

  • Time and space are central: temporal structure of the theory: telling and retelling of one’s self-narrative, interest in connections between past, present, and future, spatial structure of the theory: the person tells a story from a particular position in an imaginal space; there is always a counter-position (antagonist,  an agreeing or disagreeing other)

  • For a detailed exposition of the theory see the book Self-Narratives: The Construction of Meaning in Psychotherapy

 
 

Achievement Motivation Test for adults

  • The Achievement Motivation Test for adults (Prestatie-Motivatie-Test in Dutch) is 90 multiple-choice item questionnaire for the measurement of three motives:

    • Achievement motive: the tendency to excel in task-situations, both in the eyes of another person and in the eyes of oneself.

    • Debilitating anxiety: a fear of dysfunctioning in task situations which are stressful or lack a clear structure, a fear which has a debilitating influence on performance in such situations.

    • Facilitating anxiety: a fear of dysfunctioning in task situations which are stressful or lack a clear structure, a fear which has a facilitating influence on performance in such situations.

  • For an introduction into psychometric properties of the achievement motive scale see the article: Hubert J.M. Hermans (1970). A questionnaire measure of achievement motivation. Journal of Applied Psychology, 54, 353-363.

  • For discussion and criticism of the test see the articles: Jan A. Feij (1974), An investigation into the meaning of the Achievement Motivation Test 1: Questionnaire correlates. Nederlands Tijdschrift voor de Psychologie, 29, 171-190, and Jan A. Feij (1975). An investigation into the meaning of the Achievement Motivation Test 2: Psychophysiological correlates. Nederlands Tijdschrift voor de Psychologie, 30, 233-253. The manual is in Dutch: Hubert J.M. Hermans (1976), Handleiding bij de Prestatie-Motivatie-Test. Lisse: Swets Publishers. A profoundly revised test and manual appeared in 2004 with Harcourt in Lisse, Netherlands.

Achievement Motivation Test for children

  • The Achievement Motivation  Test for children (Prestatie-Motivatie-Test voor kinderen in Dutch) is 94 multiple-choice item questionnaire for the measurement of four motives:

    • Achievement motive: the tendency to excel in task-situations, both in the eyes of another person and in the eyes of oneself. 

    • Debilitating anxiety: a fear of dysfunctioning in task situations which are stressful or lack a clear structure, a fear which has a debilitating influence on performance in such situations.

    • Facilitating anxiety: a fear of dysfunctioning in task situations which are stressful or lack a clear structure, a fear which has a facilitating influence on performance in such situations. 

    • Social desirability: the tendency to present oneself in a socially desirable way as an expression of the so-called approval motive

  • For an introduction into the basic structure of the Achievement Motivation Test for children see the article: Hubert J.M. Hermans, Jan J.F. ter Laak, & Piet C.J. Maes (1972). Achievement motivation and fear of failure in family and school. Developmental Psychology, 6, 520-528. The manual is in Dutch: Hubert J.M. Hermans (1983), Prestatie-Motivatie-Test voor kinderen (PMT-k 83). Lisse: Swets & Zeitlinger.