Testing times…

January 5, 2011 at 7:27 am 4 comments

I stumbled upon “The Psychologist’s book of personality tests” by Louis Janda (John Wiley & Sons 2001) and thought “that’ll make a fun blogging project”.
The subtitle of the book is telling “24 revealing tests to identify and overcome your personal barriers to a better life.” Power of Positive Thinking, much?

There is an introduction and 24 different personality tests. I am going to do one a day and blog the results and other things that to come to mind from it. Narcissistic? Of course. But also gives a chance to talk about the nature of tests, the nature of the construction of a consumerist/machinic personality under capitalism (not to say other people weren’t trying to perfect themselves long earlier – Stoics, anyone? Epictectus).

In each blog I will try to answer (at least) the following questions

What questions are rubbish
What “skews” there might be
What are the race, gender and class implications here…
What other scales exist?
Who are my favourite psychologists on this…
What do I think on this topic (of myself)
What do I think other people think
What score did I get
What scores might I have gotten 20 years ago, or 20 years hence

There are of course some disclaimers

  • The tests may not actually test what they think they’re testing…
    I may be lying to myself!
    The knowledge that I am making the scores public may skew my answers
  • And the disclaimer from the publication is worth repeating….
    This publication is designed to provide accurate and authoritative information in regard to the subject matter covered. It is sold with the understanding that the publisher is not engaged in rendering professional services. If professional advice or other expert assistance is required, the services of a competent professional person should be sought.

      Other reading

    Barbara Ehrenreich Smile or Die: How Positive Thinking Fooled America and the World (RSA animation here)
    Steven Salerno Sham: How the Self-Help Industry made America Helpless
    Myers-Briggs Inventory

    Next up – Introduction and “Self-Esteem”

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    Entry filed under: self-knowledge.

    Social Cognition Test One – Self Esteem

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