Temperament Studies with Adults

Temperament Studies with Adults

"Who we are factors significantly into how we learn and teach. Understanding this basic principle may be one key to locating the information for use in the unending quest for the improvement of instruction."

While the majority of temperament studies have been conducted on school age shildren and infants, there is a growing body of easearch and interest in the filed of temperament, particularly within the last decade. And, while most of the child temperament studies focused on dysfunctional behaviors and psychosocial behavior, similarly the majority of adult temperament studies focus on factors related to some measurement of success-academic or professional.

Sheldon and Stevens (1942) were among the first to investigate the behaivoral dynamics and the interrelationships between the static and dynamic levels of personality. Building on the previous work of Kretschmer, Sheldon and Stevens' five year study analyzed 200 young men both morphologically and temperamentally, measuring in addition to the primary components a number of apparently secondary temperamental characteristics. "Sheldon's system of rating [was] based on measurements of 17 anthropometric characteristics, in addition to the ponderal index, or ratio of height to the cube root of weight, which is the best single indicator of somatotype" (Diamond, 1957, p.139-140).

Sheldon and Stevens (1942) found that three groups of traits showed positive intercorelation among themselves, and negative correlation with all or nearly all of the other traits. The 17 anthropometric and single ponderal index give rise to the three indices, one each for each of the morphological components. The procedure required that the researchers,

To determine an individual's somatotype, he must separately relate to each component on a seven-point scale. The three somatotypes as described by the authors are:

Within the last decade, researchers such as Kocinski (1984), Wnetura (1984), Evans (1986), Zarghani (1988), and Casey (1993) investigated teaching and learning styles as they relate to student academic performance. Kocinski studied 105 freshmen nursing students in a community college using the MBTI. The study attempted to identify the manifestations of learning styles, determine the difference in achievement of subjects who had knowledge of their learning style and those who did not, and identify what effect certain demographic variables had on achievement of subjects who id not know their leraning style.

Wnetura's ex post factor study examined teaching and learning styles in classrooms to determine how matched and mismatched styles affect student academic performance. Using the MBTI as an indicator of psychological type and learning preference, the authors attempted to measure academic performance based on matching teaching and learning styles. The researcher proposed that similar styles promoted academic sucess.

Also using the MBTI: Evans (1986) investigated the relationship among psychological types, teaching styles, and the achievement of six groups of urban high school freshmen whose reading scores on a standardized test ranged from 6.0 to 7.5; Zarghani studied the major coping strategies which college students with different personality temperament used to deal with their learning blocks; and Casey (1993), working with a representative group of Academic Instructor School students researched, (a) student learning styles' influnce on aademic success, (b) which styles were most successful, (c) whether or not there was a match between successful learner styles and organization teaching styles, and (d) the influence of the isntrucot's learning style on students' academic success.

McFadden (1986) investigated 153 senior, baccalaureate nursing students' perception about their clinical decision making and its relationship to learning style, personality type, age, gender, education, college career choice, and nursing work experience. Badenboch (1986) examined how managers preferredto obtain and process information with and through a vocational education activity. Using the MBTI and LSI, Badenboch determined personality type and preferred learning style, examined the differences in type and style among and between groups, and related information to the implications for delivering training.

Schultz (1985) compared the proportion of Keirseyan temperaments found in the normative secondary education population with the proportion of temperaments found in the secondary education Industrial Education population to find if differences existed and to correlate temperaments found with Keirseyan and Jungian style instruments. Vance (1991) classified visitors to the Milwaukee Public Museum's Rain Forest: Exploring Life on Earth on the basis of MBTI preference using behavioral observations such as time spent and involvement at each display.

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    All contents copyright (C) 1995
    Peter L. Heineman
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    Comments to: PHeineman@metropo.mccneb.edu