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What's Your Type?

"The purpose of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® is to make the theory of psychological types described by C. G. Jung (1921/1971) understandable and useful in people's lives. The essence of the theory is that much seemingly random variation in behavior is actually quite orderly and consistent, being due to basic differences in the way individuals prefer to use their perception and judgment."
-- from Chapter 1 of the 1985 MBTI® Manual: A Guide to the Development and Use of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator®.

To make psychological type easier to understand it is often useful to use the model of temperament; which describes four distinct patterns of behavior using the MBTI preference scales of NF, NT, SJ, and SP.
-- from

Keep in mind that the MBTI® Inventory is more than just questionnaire and a 4-letter code. To determine your best-fit Type, you need to set proper expectations, answer the questions as your core, preferred self, and then verify your type by reading and agreeing (or disagreeing!) with the associated profiles.

Consultants, counselors, coaches, therapists and many other people with interests or training in psychology, human development, and social interaction may be certified to administer the MBTI instrument, discuss your results, and help you to verify your MBTI type, one on one or in a group.

Regardless of where you take the inventory, be sure to answer each question based on your true values and feelings, not based on how you think you "should" respond or how someone else might expect you to respond! The MBTI inventory is not infallible . Results can vary based on your mood, whether you're at home or work, the day of the week, and more. If you find yourself thinking "I try to be like this" or "I need to be like that", stop, take a breath, and reconsider how you want to be, deep inside.

In addition, it is important that you verify your results. The goal of the MBTI is to find your best fit type, not simply to accept a 4-letter code provided by a questionnaire you responded to on a given day.

You can verify your type with the help of a someone who is qualified to assist in interpreting and explaining the different types. Or, you can verify your type by reading full descriptions of your suggested Type, as well as descriptions of alternative, possible types. In either case, you are encouraged to read additional profiles as well; many are available both online and offline (in books).


Find a Practitioner

Your best option is to find a certified practitioner. A certified practitioner has access to the official MBTI materials along with the knowledge and skills to help you verify and validate your best-fit type.

In the San Francisco Bay Area, the Bay Area Association of {sychological Type (BAAPT) maintains a directory of Type Practitioners.

Beyond the Bay Area, you may be able to locate a practitioner through one of the following:

Take the Inventory Online

Online - Paid

You can take the official MBTI online from CPP, Inc. the exclusive publisher of the MBTI instrument. Be sure to read the resulting profile and consider doing additional research to verify your Type.

from CPP, publishers of the Official MBTI inventory

You can also pay more for additional interpretation assistance.

Some consultants offer access to the MBTI (and other assessments) through their websites. The following is an incomplete list of consultancies. (send me more)

Online - Free "variations"

If you can't afford (or don't want) a certified practitioner or coach at this time, or if you prefer to experiment on your own first, you may want to try one or more of the free online variations.

Use caution: There are numerous online questionnaires that are similar to the MBTI®. However, the official, tested questions and scoring program are only available from a qualified practitioner or through CPP's web site.

As they say, "your mileage will vary"! In particular, avoid the online "tests" with only a small number of questions.

The following are similar to the types of "forced choice" questions used by the MBTI® and should give you a "taste":

The following variations report a code that looks like an MBTI type code; however, their questionnaires are radically different.

Reminder - If you use a free online variant, you should be especially diligent in verifying your type. Do not simply accept the 4-letter code you receive and go away, thinking you're finished and this is "your Type".

Verify Your Type

Read the Profiles!

Especially if you don't take the MBTI with a certified practitioner, be sure to do some additional reading. It's very important to verify your type. Don't simply accept the type code you get back from taking the inventory. This is particularly important if you use one of the free "knock off" versions!

  • WIkipedia article - Show the list of links under the header "Myers-Briggs Type Indicator" at the bottom of the page.

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Topic revision: r23 - 16 Aug 2016, VickiBrown
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