Understanding the Different Types of Personality Tests and What They Measure

Personality tests are commonly used to assess different aspects of an individual’s personality. These tests can be helpful in various settings, including career counseling, personal development, and clinical psychology.

There are several types of personality tests, each measuring different aspects of a person’s individuality. Let’s discuss some of the most commonly used personality tests and what they measure.

Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI)

The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) is a personality test that has become a popular tool for understanding individual differences in personality. Developed by Isabel Briggs Myers and Katharine Cook Briggs, the MBTI is based on the work of Swiss psychologist Carl Jung and measures four dichotomies: extraversion vs. introversion, sensing vs. intuition, thinking vs. feeling, and judging vs. perceiving.

The extraversion vs. introversion dichotomy refers to the degree to which individuals are outgoing and sociable versus reserved and introspective. Extraverts tend to be energized by social interactions and enjoy being in the company of others, while introverts often prefer quiet time alone to recharge.

Big Five Personality Traits

The Big Five Personality Traits test measures five broad dimensions of personality: openness to experience, conscientiousness, extraversion/introversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism.

This test is often used in research settings to study personality traits across large populations. It can also be helpful in personal development as it provides insight into areas for potential growth.

Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI)

The MMPI is a clinical personality test that assesses various aspects of an individual’s mental health. It consists of over 500 true/false questions and measures various scales related to depression, anxiety, paranoia, and other mental health concerns.

This test is often used by clinical psychologists in diagnosing mental illness or assessing treatment progress.

Enneagram Test

The Enneagram Test measures nine distinct types of personalities based on an individual’s core motivations and fears. Each type has its own set of strengths and weaknesses that can provide insight into how a person perceives themselves and others.

This test can be helpful in personal development as it helps individuals identify their dominant traits and work towards balancing them out.


Personality tests can be useful tools for understanding different aspects of an individual’s character. By identifying areas for potential growth or recognizing strengths that may have gone unnoticed before taking the test, individuals can gain valuable insights into themselves that can help guide their personal or professional lives.

However, it’s important to remember that these tests should not be taken as absolute truths about a person’s character or abilities. They are simply tools meant to provide guidance and suggestions for self-discovery and improvement.

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