The Standardization of Myers-Briggs Type Indicator into Turkisk: An Application on Students

Article excerpt

The main purpose of this study is to adapt the most widely used form of the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI), which is Form M with 93 items, into Turkish and provide linguistic and cultural equivalence, reliability and validity of the test. In scope of the standardization, linguistic and cultural equivalence was provided by three bilingual academicians via translation-back translation method. The demographic questions were added to the form and the form was applied on 214 students from high school and universities. Reliability analysis was made for the whole test and four functions of MBTI. Moreover, factorial validation is examined and the effect of demographic features on the MBTI type was investigated. The findings proved that Turkish version of MBTI (M Form) and the main dichotomies are reliable. The construct validity was verified as well.

Keywords: Jungian Theory, Myers Briggs Type Indicator, Reliability, Standardization

The History of MBTI

Carl Jung's (1921/1971) theory is that the variations in human behavior are due to the logical results of a few basic observable preferences (Myers, McCaulley, Quenk & Hammer, 2003). He attempted to explain individual differences in personalities with two types which are extraverts and introverts (Myers et al., p. 22). Then he divided his initial classifications into types by identifying two pairs of opposite mental functions: two opposite perceiving functions respectively were labeled; Sensation (S) and Intuition (N); and two opposite judging functions, which Jung called Thinking (T) and Feeling (F) (Bell, 2005, p.30).

Isabel Briggs Myers and her mother Katharine Briggs developed the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) based on Jung's theory (Gentry, Mondore & Cox, 2006, p.858). They identified a fourth dichotomy in addition to Jung's theory, which they labeled: Judging-Perceiving (J-P) (Myers et al.). This served to make explicit one aspect of the theory that was implicit but undeveloped in Carl Jung's earlier work (Bell, 2005, p.32).

MBTI is a personality inventory that has been designed to identify an individual's preferences on eight separate characteristics (Myers et al., 2003). In 1942, Briggs and Myers began their first development in Jung's personality theory and they made widespread revision during the decades. They administered the test to cooperating individuals and conducted the preliminary analysis and revision of the instrument (Pittenger, 1993, p.468). While developing MBTI, their primary aim was to give individuals access to the benefit of knowing their personality type; furthermore, to validate Jung's theory of psychological types and to put it to practical use (Myers et al., 2003).

M Form, which was published in 1998, is the most recent version of MBTI. It contains 93 items written at the seventh-grade level with forced-choice answers that reflect the dichotomous poles. Scores from four dichotomous scales combine to form 16 possible personality types, each represented by a four-letter code indicating the preference for each of the dichotomies. Each letter represents a complex set of relationship among the functions (S, N, T, F), attitudes (E and I) and attitudes toward the world (J and P) (Hull, 2004, p.19).

The Structure of MBTI

The Myers-Briggs personality type theory provides a framework for examining similarities and differences in personality traits. Jung argued that two basic differences exist among human beings in how they prefer to use their minds and how their core personality develops (Myers, 1993). The first difference is related to how individuals perceive or take in information about experience (Opt & Loffredo, 2003, p.562). The second basic difference is related to how individuals process or come to conclusions about that which they have perceived. Beside these two core personality differences, it is argued that human beings differ in whether they focus more on the inner world of experience or the outer world of experience as well. …