What is the Myers-Briggs Personality Test?

Myers Briggs Personality TypesThe Myers-Briggs Personality Test helps people to gain honest assessments of their natural preferences, attitudes and the lens through which they view life. The test which is also called the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) was created by a mother and daughter pair who based their work on the typological theory of a psychiatrist who was named Carl Jung. According to historic accounts, Katharine Briggs became interested in personality types after meeting her son-in-law whose personality apparently differed greatly from other family members, and her daughter Isabella Myers continued her mother’s work. The completed personality test was proposed for use by women who were entering the workforce during World War II. Today, the test still gives keen insight into the natural tendencies that affect one’s personal and professional life. Here is a description of the personality test, ways that the MBTI test results are used today and where one can take the official MBTI personality test.

How Does The MBTI Work

The MBTI consists of 93 questions that are simple and straight forward enough to be used by the average high school freshman. The answers to the test are then used to identify exam takers by combination categories of introversion, extroversion, feeling, judgment, intuition, perception and thinkers. These combinations are associated with 16 personality types in which all test takers allegedly fit. Some of the distinct personality types are the healer, performer, teacher and craftsman. For example, a person that fits into the combination categories of introversion, intuition, feeling and perception is classified as a healer according to the personality test. Another person who fits into the combination categories of extroversion, intuition, feeling and judging is determined to be a teacher. The test also explains the unique characteristics of each of the 16 personality types, and many test takers find that their exam results are eerily similar to how they perceive themselves.

Ways That MBTI Results Are Used Today

The results of MBTI tests are used most prominently by employers across many different industries. Qualified company representatives administer the test to attempt to determine if a prospective employee will fit company or project team culture. High school guidance counselors facilitate MBTI testing to help students discover the careers that best match their personalities and to warn them against jobs that do not fit their identified personalities. Interestingly, people also use the MBTI to determine the personality of their mates and other loved ones so that they can develop more meaningful relationships with them.

Administration of the MBTI Test

The use of the MBTI is now widespread, and the personality assessment tool is used worldwide, according to the Washington Post. However, access to the official MBTI assessment is limited to those with the proper educational background or those who have completed the MBTI certification program. These administrators of the test gain access to MBTI materials through Consulting Psychologists Press which publishes the assessment. The free, online personality tests that are based upon the Myers-Briggs model are generally not authentic versions of the assessment.

Related Resource: Best Degrees for INFP Personality Types


The MBTI had humble beginnings as the brainchild of a woman who had an insatiable curiosity for how the mind works but who was otherwise untrained in the field of psychology. Her efforts and those of her daughter have helped countless people find career paths that they find enjoyable and rewarding just by discovering themselves through the use of the Myers-Briggs Personality Test.