Socionic library
articles, books and educational materials

of the International institute of Socionics

Peter Geyer
Fundamentals of Personality Type 5. Why are there type questionnaires and what do they do?

The selection of questionnaires above represents a judgement as to, the most pertinent questionnaires. In this case a combination of history and locality (the US) has been used. However other instruments such as Insights (Scotland), the JTI (Norway and Europe), Socionics (online/Russia), TMI (Australia) the Type Dynamics Indicator (England) as well as the many brief questionnaires that are part of various book introductions are available and used. The TMI for instance, dates from the 1970s.

So why so many?

Firstly, these questionnaires and profiles represent different views of Jungʼs typology, some extensively researched others more sketchily so. Some donʼt appear to have contacted Jungʼs ideas much. The popularity of the MBTI, particularly from the 1980s, is also significant. The advent of a non-pathologically oriented questionnaire whose theme was that it was good to be you had broad appeal, to the dismay of some personality researchers and instrument developers. This appeal made it more likely that also meant that people would want to make up their own questionnaire and improve on the MBTI in whatever way they saw fit.

Importantly, Isabel Myersʼ work was a breakthrough, succeeding in solving the problem of measuring Jungʼs typology where others had failed. This kind of breakthrough in any area, more easily seen in technological development enables repetition and development. The success of the MBTI in the public domain made it easier for people to replicate the scales and items, because a successful method was there in front of them. Some replicators, by no means all, either directly used items from the MBTI, or paraphrased them. In this way, itʼs possible to get a workable questionnaire up and running without having to attend to the niceties of Jung or Myers at all.

People from various parts of the world have also experienced difficulty with the business approach and even the research practices related to the MBTI. The JTI, one of the results from this experience, is apparently the biggest selling type questionnaire in Europe for instance. The Golden sells extremely well in France.

fundamentals_of_personality_type_5._why_are_there_type_questionnaires_and_what_do_they_do-.pdf 164.6 KiB / PDF