Personality tests
Personality Tests:
The main personality tests (Big Five, Big 5, 16PF...)

List of the most famous personality tests and psychometric tests used in human resources for recruitment and employment. Complete list.

Personality tests are part of the recruitment or selection process. Personality tests are devised by occupational psychologists to provide employers with a reliable method of selecting the most suitable job applicants or candidates for promotion. The accuracy and reliability of the personality test depend upon a number of factors, firstly and most importantly is how truthfully you answer the questions. Our personality test are extremely accurate, over 87% !!

The main personality tests available in USA for human resources

Big Five personality traits - Personality test

Description: The "Big Five" factors (or Five Factor Model; FFM) of personality are five broad domains or dimensions of personality which are used to describe human personality.The Big five factors are O - C - E - A - N : Openness, Conscientiousness, Extraversion, Agreeableness, Neuroticism.

Time Required: 20 - 30 minutes.
Purpose: Recruitment, Career, Employment, Coaching, Career management, Psychometrics, Psychology.

Sample openness items
• I have a rich vocabulary.
• I have a vivid imagination.

Sample conscientiousness items
• I am always prepared.
• I pay attention to details.

Result: The Five-Factor Model of Personality is the most current, valid, reliable means of assessing personality available. Psychologists use it as the primary means of understanding and interpreting personality. The Five-Factor Model is:

  • Reliable: Extremely reliable compared to available personality inventories
  • Acceptable: High acceptance of personal results by those tested
  • Respected: Currently the most widely respected personality model in the personality research community
  • Valid: Established predictive validity across a variety of jobs
  • Uncomplicated: No theory to understand, a clear vocabulary of individual similarities and differences
  • Compatible: Serves as a road map to major theories of personality
  • Criticism: These Big Five factors have been found to be quite robust across cultures. However not everyone agrees with five factor model. Some people talk about more factors being needed; others less (Eysenck -3 factors-extraversion, introversion, psychoticism)
    Vagaries of factor analysis means that there could be more than one acceptable factor solution for the same set of data.

    NEO PI-R (Neo Personality Inventory, Revised) - Personality test

    Description: The NEO PI-R is used to understand personality traits. The testmeasures the five major dimensions of normal, adult personality. The five domain scales are: neuroticism, extraversion, openness, agreeableness and conscientiousness. Each domain scale is based on six facet scales consisting of specific groups of intercorrelated traits. The test provides a measure of one’s emotional, interpersonal, experiential, attitudinal and motivational style.

    Purpose: Psychology, Recruitment, Career, Assessment, Team building.

    Time Required: 30-40 minutes.
    Ages 17 and older.
    Paul T. Costa Jr. & Robert R. McCrae
    Psychological Assessment Resources

    Questionnaire: The NEO PI-R is self-administered and is available in two parallel versions. Each version contains 240 items and three validity items, and requires a 6th-grade reading level.

    A list of the personality dimensions measured by the Revised NEO Personality Inventory, or NEO PI-R, including facets, is as follows:

    Neuroticism Anxiety; Hostility; .Depression; Self-Consciousness; Impulsiveness; Vulnerability to Stress
    ExtraversionWarmth; Gregariousnessh; Assertivenessh; Activityh; Excitement Seekingh; Positive Emotion
    Openness to experienceFantasy; Aesthetics; Feelings; Actions; Ideas; Values
    AgreeablenessTrust; Straightforwardness; Altruism; Compliance; Modesty; Tendermindedness
    ConscientiousnessCompetence; Order; Dutifulness; Achievement Striving; Self-Discipline; Deliberation

    Cost: $182.00 per NEO PI-R Comprehensive Kit, including 10 reusable Form S item booklets, 10 reusable Form R item booklets (5 men and 5 women),
    25 hand-scorable answer sheets, 25 Form S and 25 Form R adult profile
    forms, and 25 feedback sheets.

    Validity: Construct, convergent and divergent validity of the NEO PI-R have been demonstrated through correlations between self and spouse ratings, correlations with other tests and checklists and through the construct validity of the five-factor model itself. For instance, conscientiousness and extraversion have been found to be significantly related to job performance.

    Forms: Form S is for self-reports, and Form R (separate forms for males and
    females) is for observer ratings. The NEO Five-Factor Inventory (NEO-
    FFI) is a shortened version of Form S and requires 10-15 minutes to

    Criticism: A concern with the NEO PI-R is that it lacks efficient validity scales.
    Only three test items are included to detect honesty and accuracy in
    responding. The test was normed on volunteers under no pressure to
    respond in a socially desirable manner; therefore, caution should be used
    when interpreting scores in situations where respondents may be
    motivated to respond inaccurately. In employment situations, it may be
    useful to develop local norms.

    16 PF® - Sixteen Personality Factor™

    Description: The 16PF5 test analyze the personality in 16 main factors and 5 dimensions: anxiety, extroversion, sensitivity, independence, impulsivity.

    Time Required: 25-50 minutes
    Ages 16 and over.
    Authors: R. B. Cattel (1995)
    Institute for Personality and Ability Testing

    Purpose: Test used in business and industry to predict job related criteria such as length of time an employee is likely to remain with the company, sales
    effectiveness, work efficiency and tolerance for routine.

    The test includes 187 issues (10 to 13 issues by factors).
    I read rather books about... :
    a- literature
    b- science
    c- entertainment
    Result: The 16PF 5th edition measures, with 185 questions, 16 Personality scales, 5 Global/Second order factors, 3 Response style scales (Of which IM is one)

    Cost: $82.00 per complete kit including 10 test booklets, 25 answer sheets, 25
    individual record forms, scoring keys, manual, and one pre-paid
    processing certificate for a basic interpretive report.

    Forms: The 16 PF is available in five forms (A through E). Form A is generally
    the most popular.

    Criticism: The popularity of the 16PF is due partly to the fact that answer sheets can be mailed in for a quick return by machine scoring. The score reports
    contain a large amount of information, including a capsule personality
    description, score profile, and a summary of clinical signs, cognitive
    factors, and need patterns. A shortcoming of the 16PF is that the 16
    personality traits measured by the test are based on as few as 10-13 items
    each, which may result in decreased reliability. In addition, the 16PF is
    useful in predicting specific behavioral criteria, but does not adequately
    assess other factors that may affect or predict future behavior.

    PAI® - Personality Assessment Inventory™

    Description: The PAI continues to raise the standard for the assessment of adult psychopathology. This objective inventory of adult personality assesses psychopathological syndromes and provides information relevant for clinical diagnosis, treatment planning, and screening for psychopathology. Since its introduction, the PAI has been heralded as one of the most important innovations in the field of clinical assessment.

    Time Required: 50-60 minutes
    Ages 18 and over.

    Purpose: Twenty-two nonoverlapping full scales provide a comprehensive assessment of adult psychopathology

    Result: To provide interpretation relative to the standardization sample of 1,000 community-dwelling adults, PAI scale and subscale raw scores are translated to T scores. Transformed T scores have a mean of 50 and a standard deviation of 10, so that T-score values greater than 50 are above the mean in comparison to scores of individuals in the standardization sample. Therefore, T scores greater than or equal to 70 (2 standard deviations above the mean) will quickly alert you to a pronounced deviation from typical responses of adults in the normative sample.

    The Profile Form Adults–Revised allows you to rapidly translate raw scores to T scores and plot the pattern of test results, and it also contains a blue clinical skyline demarcating the distribution of scores for a large sample of clinical cases. This feature facilitates comparison of an individual's scores with those in the clinical sample.

    Criticism: The Critical Items Form–Revised lists 27 items (distributed across nine content areas) that suggest behavior or psychopathology that may demand immediate attention. They are identified as critical based on two criteria: indications of a potential crisis situation and a very low endorsement rate in normal individuals.

    MBTI (Myers Briggs Type Indicator) - Personality test

    Description: MBTI is the most researched and accurate personality type assessment in USA. The Myers Briggs test is used to classify individuals into one of four bipolar dimensions to detect and compare individual differences.

    Purpose: The MBTI may be used for recruitment, career, team building, leadership training, and personnel selection.

    Time Required: 15-25 minutes
    Population: 18 years old and above.
    Authors: Isabel Briggs-Myers and Katherine C. Briggs
    Publishers: Consulting Psychologists Press

    Questionnaire: The MBTI is available in Form M, G, K and J. Form M is currently the standard and most recent form. Several reports are available for each of these forms, including an Interpretive Report for Organizations, a Team Report and a Career Report.

    Following a sample Myers Briggs questionnaire:

    What annoys you most about other people? (Tick the appropriate answer)
    Changing things that are already in order ________
    Arguing over little disparities of opinion __________
    If they insist on having all the facts before they do anything new__________
    If they insist on following processes as they

    The MBTI® instrument determines preferences on four dichotomies:

    • Extraverted-Introverted (E-I)
    • Sensation-Intuition (S-N)
    • Thinking- Feeling (T-F)
    • Judging-Perceiving (J-P)

    Combinations of these preferences result in 16 distinct personality types. Understanding characteristics unique to each personality type provides insight on how they influence an individual’s way of communicating and interacting with others. The inventory is a key to both understanding the differences among types and improving communication in business and personal relationships. The MBTI instrument helps people transform themselves—by
    giving them a powerful tool for improving how they communicate, learn, and work.

    Cost: $16.30 per MBTI Profile Preview Kit, including Form M prepaid profile
    combined item booklet/answer sheet, Introduction to Type, Sixth Edition

    Reliability: Split-half reliabilities for the four scales of the MBTI typically range
    from .70-.80. See chart for internal consistency and test-retest reliabilities.

    Validity: The MBTI has successfully predicted academic progress, retention of college students, and career choice. Research on career-related topics has shown the MBTI to be moderately predictive in terms of longevity and turnover. In addition, the MBTI correlates with other assessment measures, therefore demonstrating construct validity by consistently measuring the theory of personality development it is intended to measure. A comparison of an examinee’s MBTI results with their reported type showed agreement percentages ranging between 58% and 78%.

    Criticism: A strength of the MBTI is that it assesses normal, adult behaviors, therefore, the examinee may understand and take part in the evaluation of the instrument. Additionally, all forms of the instrument may be used with most populations. A drawback of the MBTI is that little empirical information is available on minorities or blue-collar workers. Also, validity information for the MBTI is limited.

    Rorschach test - Personality test

    Description:The Rorschach Technique is one of the most widely used projective tests. Scores are based on the examinee's responses to 10 unique inkblots. The technique is useful in diagnosis and treatment planning for individuals with a wide variety of psychological problems and psychiatric disorders.

    Purpose: The Rorschach Inkblot Test measures personality structure and dynamics, including cognitive, affective/emotional, ego functioning, defenses, conflicts,and coping mechanisms. It is designed primarily for adults, although normative data also is available for adolescents and children. The association portion requires 10-15 minutes; the inquiry portion requires another 20-30 minutes; scoring and interpretation can take as long as 2 hours depending on the number and complexity of responses.

    Hermann Rorschach
    Time Required: depends.
    5 to 70 years

    Criticism: Some skeptics consider the Rorschach inkblot test pseudoscience, as several studies suggested that conclusions reached by test administrators since the 1950s were akin to cold reading. In the 1959 edition of Mental Measurement Yearbook, Lee Cronbach (former President of the Psychometric Society and American Psychological Association) is quoted in a review: "The test has repeatedly failed as a prediction of practical criteria. There is nothing in the literature to encourage reliance on Rorschach interpretations."

    PAPI® (PA Preference Inventory) Personality

    Description: PAPI™ (Personality and Preference Inventory) is a simple yet scientifically proven personality assessment that helps companies to assess the behaviour and preferred work styles of both prospective candidates and existing employees.

    Purpose: Recruitment, Career, Employment, Coaching, Career management, Psychometrics, Psychology.

    Time Required: around 45 minutes.
    from16 ans.
    PA Consulting Group.

    Result: PAPI is an ideal tool for both recruitment and personal development settings. It provides vital insights to support the information on which a selection decision is made.

    The PAPI test analyze 10 role scales and need scales.
    • Leadership role (L)
    • Organized type (C)
    • Attention to detail (D)
    • Conceptual thinker (R)
    • Social harmonizer (S)
    • Ease in decision making (I)
    • Work pace (T)
    • Emotional restraint (E)
    • Role of the hard worker (G)
    • Integrative planner (H)

    • Need to control others (P)
    • Need for rules and supervision (W)
    • Need for change (Z)
    • Need to finish a task (N)
    • Need to be noticed (X)
    • Need to belong to groups (B)
    • Need to relate closely to individuals (O)
    • Need to be forceful (K)
    • Need to achieve (A)
    • Need to be supportive (F)

    RIASEC Holland Codes - Personality test

    Description: The Holland Codes are usually referred to by their first letters: RIASEC: Realistic, Investigative, Artistic, Social, Enterprising, and Conventional

    Purpose: Recruitment, Career, Coaching. The Holland Code inventory gives individuals a fast and informative way to explore occupations based on their interests. Using the RIASEC system developed by John Holland--the most widely used occupational interest coding system available.

    Time Required: 40 - 45 minutes.

    The six personality and work environment types described by Holland are as follows:

    • Realistic - practical, physical, hands-on, tool-oriented
    • Investigative - analytical, intellectual, scientific, explorative
    • Artistic - creative, original, independent, chaotic
    • Social - cooperative, supporting, helping, healing/nurturing
    • Enterprising - competitive environments, leadership, persuading
    • Conventional - detail-oriented, organizing, clerical

    DISC assessment - Personality test

    Description: DISC examine the behavior of individuals in their environment or within a specific situation (otherwise known as environment). It therefore focuses on the styles and preferences of such behavior.

    Purpose: Recruitment, Career, Coaching. DISC is a group of psychological inventories developed by John Geier.

    Author: John Geier.

    The assessments classify four aspects of behavior by testing a person's preferences in word associations (compare with Myers-Briggs Type Indicator). DISC is an acronym for:

    • Dominance – relating to control, power and assertiveness
    • Influence – relating to social situations and communication
    • Steadiness (submission in Marston's time) – relating to patience, persistence, and thoughtfulness
    • Compliance (or caution, compliance in Marston's time) – relating to structure and organization

    These four dimensions can be grouped in a grid with "D" and "I" sharing the top row and representing extroverted aspects of the personality, and "C" and "S" below representing introverted aspects. "D" and "C" then share the left column and represent task-focused aspects, and "I" and "S" share the right column and represent social aspects. In this matrix, the vertical dimension represents a factor of "Assertive" or "Passive", while the horizontal dimension represents "Open" vs. "Guarded".

    • Dominance: People who score high in the intensity of the "D" styles factor are very active in dealing with problems and challenges, while low "D" scores are people who want to do more research before committing to a decision. High "D" people are described as demanding, forceful, egocentric, strong willed, driving, determined, ambitious, aggressive, and pioneering. Low D scores describe those who are conservative, low keyed, cooperative, calculating, undemanding, cautious, mild, agreeable, modest and peaceful.

    • Influence: People with high "I" scores influence others through talking and activity and tend to be emotional. They are described as convincing, magnetic, political, enthusiastic, persuasive, warm, demonstrative, trusting, and optimistic. Those with low "I" scores influence more by data and facts, and not with feelings. They are described as reflective, factual, calculating, skeptical, logical, suspicious, matter of fact, pessimistic, and critical.

    • Steadiness: People with high "S" styles scores want a steady pace, security, and do not like sudden change. High "S" individuals are calm, relaxed, patient, possessive, predictable, deliberate, stable, consistent, and tend to be unemotional and poker faced. Low "S" intensity scores are those who like change and variety. People with low "S" scores are described as restless, demonstrative, impatient, eager, or even impulsive.

    • Compliance: People with high "C" styles adhere to rules, regulations, and structure. They like to do quality work and do it right the first time. High "C" people are careful, cautious, exacting, neat, systematic, diplomatic, accurate, and tactful. Those with low "C" scores challenge the rules and want independence and are described as self-willed, stubborn, opinionated, unsystematic, arbitrary, and unconcerned with details.

    Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI) - Personality test

    Description: The Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI) is one of the most frequently used personality tests in mental health. The test is used by trained professionals to assist in identifying personality structure and psychopathology.

    WAIS® - Wechsler Test - Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale - Intelligence

    Description: The Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS) intelligence quotient (IQ) tests are the primary clinical instruments used to measure adult and adolescent intelligence.

    From 16 to 64 years old.

    Purpose: IQ, Recruitment, Career, Psychology.

    Result: IQ scores: 100 is average. 70 is dimwit. Anything above 100 is very smart but genius would be reached at 140.
    Over 140 - Genius or almost genius 120 - 140 - Very superior intelligence 110 - 119 - Superior intelligence 90 - 109 - Average or normal intelligence 80 - 89 - Dullness 70 - 79 - Borderline deficiency in intelligence Under 70 - Feeble-mindedness

    Note: There is much debate as to the value of measuring intelligence by IQ and if it has much real world meaning. Individuals are so unique and different and IQ tests measure such a limited part of human intelligence that it is almost worth not paying attention to except for kicks.

    Any individual person can have enormous talent in one area that far supercedes that of another who has a higher IQ score. For example, you might have a person with a 95 IQ that has extraordinary musical talent and ability far superior than another person with a 140 IQ. Similarly you might have two people with approximately the same IQ but one has amazing mathematical acuity while the other is a brilliant linguist who speaks 7 languages.

    Then there are other factors that come into play such as a person's emotional and social intelligence and their self awareness. The final conclusion should be that each person should focus on developing their abilities to their maximum potential and should not perceive any IQ score, whether high, low or in between any sort of gauge to a person's limits or entitlement.


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