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  1. #1
    shoshaku jushaku rivercrow's Avatar
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    Default Administering the MBTI

    Administration is probably the part of MBTI that I'm struggling with the most. I know that, given time and experience, I will get better at it. But for now, I find myself stumbling over setting the stage.

    The goal of the the instrument is to measure the client's preferences. Well and good. The goal of the administrator is to present the sorter in an ethical manner and minimize bias or other controllable influences that may affect the reliability of the instrument.

    "Answer the questions with your shoes off." This is a common phrase used by MBTI practitioners. What does it mean? It's not immediately clear. I find myself adding to the phrase--answer how you would if you didn't have to work for anyone. Does that work? Not sure. I'm especially concerned about the presentation of the instrument with clients who are working adults. Once in the working world, one quickly realizes that plans and structure are needed and so on.

    I know from personal experience that if I respond with my work shoes on, my learned skills in Extraverted Thinking emerge. As an administrator, I'd ask if I am replying as who I am or what I do. This is a big difference--skills in non-preferred function areas can increase, but this does not equate to a Type change.

    The administrator is not permitted to explain words or phrases. Any explanation could skew the results. If the client cannot select between the choices offered, s/he should skip the question. Guessing can also affect the reliability.

    The client's being under stress/duress can affect reliability. Do the scores on the test relate to hirability? If yes, then 1) the instrument is being used unethically and 2) reliability will suffer. Is the client "in the grip" of a fourth process from some kind of personal life stress? This can also affect reliability and, again, administering the instrument during times of great stress is a questionable ethical practice.

    Okay, enough for now.
    Who rises in the morning, looks in the mirror and says, "I think I will do something stupid today?" -- James Hollis
    If people never did silly things nothing intelligent would ever get done. -- Ludwig Wittgenstein
    Whaling is illegal in Oklahoma.

  2. #2
    Lex Parsimoniae Xander's Avatar
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    Have an aura of "If you feel like that then fine".

    At some stage it's their responsibility to answer in a relaxed and natural way. It's just up to you to point out that they should answer in such a mindset and try to give them an environment within which it is more likely.
    Isn't it time for a colourful metaphor?

  3. #3
    shoshaku jushaku rivercrow's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Xander View Post
    Have an aura of "If you feel like that then fine".

    At some stage it's their responsibility to answer in a relaxed and natural way. It's just up to you to point out that they should answer in such a mindset and try to give them an environment within which it is more likely.
    Easier said than done, at times. Hence my comments.
    Who rises in the morning, looks in the mirror and says, "I think I will do something stupid today?" -- James Hollis
    If people never did silly things nothing intelligent would ever get done. -- Ludwig Wittgenstein
    Whaling is illegal in Oklahoma.

  4. #4
    Senior Member meshou's Avatar
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    How do you reconcile the fact that they are answering questions in the context of people taking a personality test in a clinical setting, when people are nearly never asked exhastive questions about themselves, and are usually not in a clinical setting?

    I suppose what I'm getting at is I think people may answer questions about themselves differently in different contexts, and some of those contexts may be more natural to them.
    Let's do this thing.

  5. #5
    Lallygag Moderator Geoff's Avatar
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    My experiences with accredited testing :

    I went through the testing process with an MBTI accredited human resources professional (and a senior "director" one, too with a lot of experience). She spent 3 days assessing us, with the questionaires, follow up interviews and then 2 days of observational group exercises. It was very thorough.


    She concluded I was XNTP from the test results after we had discussed to verify my understanding, and given some examples - at the time I was totally naive to the meaning of any of the letters, but observationally placed me at INTP (the T/F bounday was close too, but less so). On each axis it was described to me, post testing, and I was asked to "guess" where I was placed and then my result was revealed to me. I guessed at INTP. A three week gap was left between the questionaire and the follow up interviews to ensure we had mostly forgotten what the questions were about.

    Before doing the questionaires, I asked the very question raised elsewhere in this thread of the administrator - do I answer these questions as myself, or the learned work me... because there were clearly two people; the one I am "inside", and the one that working in a busy organised workplace requires me to be.

    I was told that it works best if one tries to place the questions outside of a professional context, and that one should therefore imagine they are in a weekend activity, for example a sporting club, or the like where one is less likely to be influenced by the requirement to fit in for career success.

    Out of interest, I tried to deconstruct the test.. sabotaged some of the questions to see what happened (there were hundreds of the damn things in the official test I did, and i was bored!). Interestingly, the assessor picked this up and pointed me to her notes that said that the type most likely to do this was INTP, and that as a result this helped on my XNTP test result to point me more towards INTP than ENTP.

    The focus on my testing was on establishing a non-confrontational environment - we were all given lots of food and drink the night before, and told it had no bearing other than helping us discover about ourselves (and I believe this is the case, although my personnel file is marked INTP, and I am in a position of leadership, so that is unusual.. there is a flag there on that). I think this helped.. remove some of the OP problems raised, those of stress and hirability factors.

    As an aside, it is very difficult to test accurately once one is no longer naive to the meaning of the questions.

    -Geoff

  6. #6
    Lex Parsimoniae Xander's Avatar
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    Would the best line be
    "Answer as you think things should be and not necessarily as they are"
    or do you reckon that'd perhaps extrovert and maybe even J people a little?

    I'm trying to think how to condense "Just be" into a meaningful sentence which any lay person can understand.
    Isn't it time for a colourful metaphor?

  7. #7
    Senior Member kuranes's Avatar
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    If someone wanted to indicate that they DO plan things, but tend to leave the detailed implementation of those plans to last minute improvisation, I wonder how that would be expressed ? Would you have to answer half the questions ( about propensity for planning vs. impulsiveness ) in the one extreme and half towards the other extreme ? You are not given a "lukewarm" choice, IOW.

    Also it is often unclear if the "plans" ( schedules, systems, methodologies ) are one's own or something from "society" being imposed on oneself. One tends to guess willy-nilly which is being referred to.

  8. #8
    Lex Parsimoniae Xander's Avatar
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    K,
    As far as I understand it such specifics are not really tested. Anything in isolation is false under MBTI until after you have established their type. That's why they do all those interviews and such so the tester has context for the results and can modify them to suit.

    For example my sisters husband to be tested as an ENFJ (same as her!!!) but his type was corrected to ENFP based on the observations of his behaviour. The rationale for the results was that he'd been brought up to be a J by a group of strong Js and hence his P got crushed and is struggling for an outlet (you should see his art!).
    Isn't it time for a colourful metaphor?

  9. #9
    Senior Member kuranes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xander View Post
    K,
    As far as I understand it such specifics are not really tested. Anything in isolation is false under MBTI until after you have established their type. That's why they do all those interviews and such so the tester has context for the results and can modify them to suit.
    Sounds like the interview is more crucial than the test. I wonder if the type of the interviewer is a factor ?

  10. #10
    Lex Parsimoniae Xander's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kuranes View Post
    Sounds like the interview is more crucial than the test. I wonder if the type of the interviewer is a factor ?
    A good N answer

    The context is important but it's the test which your there for

    Expanding on your thinking a little though, not only the interviewers type has an influence but so too does the type of the person who wrote the test.
    Isn't it time for a colourful metaphor?

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