Personality Assessment Instrument

Topics: Personality psychology, Psychology, Myers-Briggs Type Indicator Pages: 6 (1849 words) Published: January 24, 2011
Personality Assessment Instruments

Personality Assessment Instruments
Personality Assessment instruments are comprised of theories and techniques to measure an individual’s personality traits. The traditional psychoanalytical theories provide a framework for understanding negative behavior as well as concepts that predict future behavioral outcomes. Because of the possibility of predictive personality traits, career counselors and organizations have used personality assessment instruments to screen possible employers for qualification. In addition, personality assessment instrument have also been used to detect disordered personalities or other unresolved issues that cause negative behavior patterns in an individual. In this paper I will discuss three Personality Assessment Instruments widely used in measuring an individual’s personality; Myer-Briggs Type Indicator, Rorschach Inkblot Test and self help books. I will discuss the validity, comprehensiveness, applicability and cultural utility of these personality assessments in also examine the strengths and weaknesses of why some work and some do not. The strength and weaknesses of each personality assessment instrument is key in understanding which instrument is “appropriate” to use.

Myer-Briggs Type Indicator
Largely based on Carl Jung’s Theory of Personality, The Myer-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) was created by Katherine Cook Briggs and Isabel Briggs Myer, during WWII to evaluate personality types to know where to place women entering the industrial workforce. The MBTI would assess women for jobs they were best qualified for. Seeing how successful the MBTI was in placing women in the workforce, today it is still used as an assessment instrument by career counselors and organizations for team building (McCaulley, 2000). The MBTI is a self-report, forced-choice questionnaire. The letters represent the respective personality types which have 16 unique possible outcomes. The test has about 100 questions with only two choices to pick from. MBTI divides an individual’s personality into four areas (McCaulley, 2000); 1. Extraversion (E) or Introversion (I)

2. Sensing (S) or intuition (N)
3. Thinking (T) or feeling (F)
4. Judging (J) or perceiving (P)

This scale is an important factor in determining the dominant, auxiliary, tertiary and inferior behaviors of the individual (McCaulley, 2000). Each individual is measured by the four-letter type formula. Each group of letters reveals the dominant function of the individual and followed by the auxiliary. Each of the 16 combination of letters explains the person’s personality and what area they best function in.

Rorschach Inkblot Test
Hermann Rorschach, Swiss psychiatrist, created ill-defined designs on paper using ink. After much trial and error, Rorschach settled on 10 inkblot cards used to show to patients and illicit a response. It was determined that different patients in a particular psychiatric group gave different responses. The test was created to understand the mind of an individual. During the assessment, the patient is shown a card and is expected to explain the thoughts that come to mind when analyzing the card (Cervone, 2010). The test-giver waits to see the type of response that comes from the patient. And the question of how the patient responds or perceives the inkblot determines the type of personality the patient may have. If the patient’s response matches the inkblot structure’s intended meaning, then the patient’s thoughts are geared towards their reality. If the patient’s response does not correspond with the inkblot then the patient is perceived to have a dysfunctional personality.

Self-Help Books
Widely popular, Self-help books are a great way for a person to understand psychological disorders and possible treatments. There are a variety of books written by scholars and psychologist who have done extensive work in their area of expertise. Many...
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