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  1. #11
    deplorable basketcase Tellenbach's Avatar
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    Does this mean that most identical twins share the same MBTI type? Someone look this up please.
    Senator Rand Paul is alive because of modern medicine and because his attacker punches like a girl.

  2. #12
    Senior Member reckful's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tellenbach View Post
    Does this mean that most identical twins share the same MBTI type? Someone look this up please.
    Decades of twin studies strongly suggest that genes account for around half (or more) of the kinds of relatively stable temperament dimensions measured by the MBTI and Big Five. Note, however, that the genetic side of things is complicated: an introvert's identical twin brother would probably be an introvert, but they might have two extraverted parents. There's more Big Five data than MBTI data, but here's a recent study by Bouchard that found significant twin/MBTI correlations on all four dimensions.

    The most counterintuitive conclusion that's been drawn from the cumulative data is that how your parents raise you has almost no influence on your basic temperament — e.g., whether you'll end up an INTJ. Identical twins raised in the same household are not significantly more alike (in terms of temperament) than identical twins raised in separate households.

    Now, at this point you may well be thinking to yourself that, if non-genetic factors account for a third to a half of temperament, it seems awfully strange that how your parents raise you — not to mention all the other "environmental" influences that will be more or less similar for two twins growing up together — has virtually no effect on your temperament. How could that be?

    If you want my personal view, I'm inclined to think that the lion's share of the explanation is probably that the data substantially understates the genetic component of temperament, and here's why:

    Anytime you're doing studies where the results take the form of correlations, most sources of error are going to introduce noise into the data that has the effect of reducing the magnitude of the reported correlations. And personality typing involves multiple sources of significant error, starting with the fact that they haven't even figured out exactly what the nature of the temperament dimensions they should be measuring are, and also including multiple forms of human error in any self-assessment test that can cause the taker to answer a question "incorrectly." What's more, the more you assume (as Jung did, and as various studies suggest) that a relatively large percentage of the population is in or near the middle on one or more of the dimensions, the more mistyped people you should expect as a result of relatively small testing errors.

    Assuming that the four MBTI dimensions — or, if you prefer, the eight cognitive functions — aren't just arbitrary theoretical constructs and really do correspond to something real that could theoretically be accurately measured (by, say, directly measuring biological markers of some kind), I strongly suspect that, if every subject was accurately typed, the data would show that a substantially greater proportion of temperament is genetic. And the fact that twins raised in the same household aren't any more alike than twins raised separately would obviously seem a lot less strange if the proportion of temperament that results from "environmental" factors turned out to be very small.

  3. #13
    deplorable basketcase Tellenbach's Avatar
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    @reckful Thanks for the link to that twins article. I would agree that using personality tests to assess cognitive functions will introduce some error to the typing process. Another possibility would be the role of epigenetic factors: methylation of DNA and acetylation of histone proteins.

    According to Kayt Sukel (Dirty Minds: How Our Brains Influence Love, Sex, and Relationships), "your experience in utero and early life can result in an enzyme called DNA methyltransferase adding new molecules to the cytosine nucleotides in your DNA chain. The methylation process adds a checkmark of sorts next to the genes it affects, typically resulting in the suppression or all-out removal of gene expression for the associated protein."
    Senator Rand Paul is alive because of modern medicine and because his attacker punches like a girl.

  4. #14
    Senior Member reckful's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tellenbach View Post
    @reckful Thanks for the link to that twins article. I would agree that using personality tests to assess cognitive functions will introduce some error to the typing process. Another possibility would be the role of epigenetic factors: methylation of DNA and acetylation of histone proteins.

    According to Kayt Sukel (Dirty Minds: How Our Brains Influence Love, Sex, and Relationships), "your experience in utero and early life can result in an enzyme called DNA methyltransferase adding new molecules to the cytosine nucleotides in your DNA chain. The methylation process adds a checkmark of sorts next to the genes it affects, typically resulting in the suppression or all-out removal of gene expression for the associated protein."
    Well, I don't know how you feel, but I think that when most people (certainly including me) wonder to what extent our MBTI preferences are "genetic," what we're really wondering is the extent to which they're basically hardwired at birth. And, from that standpoint, whether the hardwiring is the result of a gene sequence or "epigenetic" factors or the womb environment (or whatever) is maybe interesting for some purposes, but I'd say it doesn't make sense to exclude any of those supplemental pre-birth influences if the goal is to come up with a percentage that reflects the extent to which we're "born that way."

    It's also worth noting that, to the extent that some of those complicating factors can influence MBTI preferences and can be different for two identical twins, that's more noise in the data that will tend to cause the reported twin/MBTI correlations to understate the extent to which your type is hardwired at birth.

  5. #15
    Senior Member INTP's Avatar
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    I was going to reply to this thread but this pretty much summed most that i had to say:

    Quote Originally Posted by reckful View Post
    Decades of twin studies strongly suggest that genes account for around half (or more) of the kinds of relatively stable temperament dimensions measured by the MBTI and Big Five. Note, however, that the genetic side of things is complicated: an introvert's identical twin brother would probably be an introvert, but they might have two extraverted parents. There's more Big Five data than MBTI data, but here's a recent study by Bouchard that found significant twin/MBTI correlations on all four dimensions.

    The most counterintuitive conclusion that's been drawn from the cumulative data is that how your parents raise you has almost no influence on your basic temperament — e.g., whether you'll end up an INTJ. Identical twins raised in the same household are not significantly more alike (in terms of temperament) than identical twins raised in separate households.

    Now, at this point you may well be thinking to yourself that, if non-genetic factors account for a third to a half of temperament, it seems awfully strange that how your parents raise you — not to mention all the other "environmental" influences that will be more or less similar for two twins growing up together — has virtually no effect on your temperament. How could that be?

    If you want my personal view, I'm inclined to think that the lion's share of the explanation is probably that the data substantially understates the genetic component of temperament, and here's why:

    Anytime you're doing studies where the results take the form of correlations, most sources of error are going to introduce noise into the data that has the effect of reducing the magnitude of the reported correlations. And personality typing involves multiple sources of significant error, starting with the fact that they haven't even figured out exactly what the nature of the temperament dimensions they should be measuring are, and also including multiple forms of human error in any self-assessment test that can cause the taker to answer a question "incorrectly." What's more, the more you assume (as Jung did, and as various studies suggest) that a relatively large percentage of the population is in or near the middle on one or more of the dimensions, the more mistyped people you should expect as a result of relatively small testing errors.

    Assuming that the four MBTI dimensions — or, if you prefer, the eight cognitive functions — aren't just arbitrary theoretical constructs and really do correspond to something real that could theoretically be accurately measured (by, say, directly measuring biological markers of some kind), I strongly suspect that, if every subject was accurately typed, the data would show that a substantially greater proportion of temperament is genetic. And the fact that twins raised in the same household aren't any more alike than twins raised separately would obviously seem a lot less strange if the proportion of temperament that results from "environmental" factors turned out to be very small.

    But there is one more thing that contributes to this and that is the fact that environment can change how you behave, even tho it might not change your true type. I wrote this essay(that was intended to lead to some critical question) about nature vs nurture of extraversion in personality psychology test few years ago(but wrote it from big 5 perspective as it was discussed more on the course than MBTI). The main question of it was whether I/E is inborn or effected by nurture and wrote 2.5 pages of text to back up this question. The last question was that(first of all i explained how environment can make an extravert to shut down and act like an introvert, which if someone tries to deny, ill just laugh at his face) if an extravert is put down enough by his environment to make him not express his extraversion freely and acts like introvert, is the person really an introvert or extravert? I think that this also illustrates the weakness of big 5's definition of I/E, as it looks more at behavioristic stuff(which is altered by environment more) than the actual cognition of the person(which MBTI looks at). And that was one of the main reasons why i chose this question(i didnt mention MBTI on the essay tho), but apparently the teacher liked my perspective since i got a pretty good number from the exam :P

    This what i wrote about I/E also applies to other MBTI letters, but maybe not as high degree. But the point is that environment changes behavior and people often type themselves according to behavior(and most MBTI tests try to type based on behavior, even tho behavior is not what type is about, which is one of the major weaknesses of MBTI tests and major source of mistyping aswell).
    "Where wisdom reigns, there is no conflict between thinking and feeling."
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  6. #16
    Wake, See, Sing, Dance Cellmold's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yeghor View Post
    I think our core temperament (like NF or NT) is predetermined at birth due to our physiology (i.e. hereditary) but our I\E and J\P preferences settle thru our interaction with environment...
    Oh that's all OK then.

    So far I'm an ESFTJP.
    'One of (Lucas) Cranach's masterpieces, discussed by (Joseph) Koerner, is in it's self-referentiality the perfect expression of left-hemisphere emptiness and a precursor of post-modernism. There is no longer anything to point to beyond, nothing Other, so it points pointlessly to itself.' - Iain McGilChrist

    Suppose a tree fell down, Pooh, when we were underneath it?"
    "Suppose it didn't," said Pooh, after careful thought.
    Piglet was comforted by this.
    - A.A. Milne.

  7. #17
    Senior Member yeghor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AffirmitiveAnxiety View Post
    Oh that's all OK then.

    So far I'm an ESFTJP.
    How did that happen?

  8. #18
    Wake, See, Sing, Dance Cellmold's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yeghor View Post
    How did that happen?
    It's my hereditary background.
    'One of (Lucas) Cranach's masterpieces, discussed by (Joseph) Koerner, is in it's self-referentiality the perfect expression of left-hemisphere emptiness and a precursor of post-modernism. There is no longer anything to point to beyond, nothing Other, so it points pointlessly to itself.' - Iain McGilChrist

    Suppose a tree fell down, Pooh, when we were underneath it?"
    "Suppose it didn't," said Pooh, after careful thought.
    Piglet was comforted by this.
    - A.A. Milne.

  9. #19
    Senior Member yeghor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AffirmitiveAnxiety View Post
    It's my hereditary background.
    Like you have Irish-Scottish-German, Hollander and Cherokee lineage in your blood or something?

  10. #20
    Wake, See, Sing, Dance Cellmold's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yeghor View Post
    Like you have Irish-Scottish-German, Hollander and Cherokee lineage in your blood or something?
    More like ESF of some kind.
    'One of (Lucas) Cranach's masterpieces, discussed by (Joseph) Koerner, is in it's self-referentiality the perfect expression of left-hemisphere emptiness and a precursor of post-modernism. There is no longer anything to point to beyond, nothing Other, so it points pointlessly to itself.' - Iain McGilChrist

    Suppose a tree fell down, Pooh, when we were underneath it?"
    "Suppose it didn't," said Pooh, after careful thought.
    Piglet was comforted by this.
    - A.A. Milne.

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