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Matching Kids to Teachers
Part 4 - The Negatively Biased Personality Tests

On Education and Learning



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Last week, in our ongoing weekly series on education and learning, we took our first look at Emergence Personality Theory's, Social Priority tests, a simple test which could better match students to teachers. The test we looked at was "positively biased." This week, we're going to take a look at the alter ego tests, known simply as the "negatively" biased tests. "Positively biased" versus "negatively biased." What's the difference? Let's see.

Social Priority test example - Matching Teachers to Students

Chapter Twenty Three

Human Motives, Great and Small

All personality theorists posit motives for human behavior. Specifics aside, these motives could all be split out into only three categories; [1] those meant to avoid pain, [2] those meant to gain rewards, and [3] those meant to lead to self discovery. According to Emergence Personality Theory, the first, "avoid pain," category accounts for about 80% of human motives; the second, "gain rewards," category for 15% of human motives, and the third, "self discovery," category for a mere 5% of human motives. At best.

Now, if we apply these ideas to last week's test, we see that last week's questions clearly fall into the second category of human motive; those meant to lead to rewards. Certainly, this is what is at the heart of a question like, "Which would you rather be, comfortable or neat."

We call personality tests voiced with these kinds of questions, "positively biased" tests. In real life, they account for about 15% of what makes people do and think what they think and do.

This week, we'll be looking at a test which uses questions voiced in the 80% category. We call these tests, "negatively biased" tests. Here, seeing the difference is easy, even with a quick glance at this week's first test question; "Which is harder, being hungry or being ignorant?" "Which is harder ...?" Obviously, the focus here is on avoiding pain.

So why voice these test questions both as positives and as negatives? Again, the answer should be obvious. According to Emergence Personality Theory, by doing this, we've covered 95% of human motives. What is not so obvious, though, is why there are no tests of the third genre. Why not? Because the third genre of test questions, the "self discovery" questions, can potentially generate life changing effects. Not exactly the type of questions you would want to be asking kids on a placement test. Certainly not without being trained in Emergence Therapy. And absolutely not without their parents' fully conscious consent.

Emergence Therapists know this third category of questions by another name as well. They call them, "visual dialogues." In truth, they account for about 80% of an Emergence Therapist's efforts. Interestingly enough, this alone should show you what makes Emergence Therapy so different from most present therapies. The point is, though, that schools are not the place for kids to be subjected to therapies. Certainly not by untrained "therapists." Thus, we have no tests based on self discovery questions.

Finally, before moving on to this week's sample test, know we'll return, in future weeks, to talk more about the 80 / 15 / 5 basis of human motivation. Why? For one thing, because I do not expect you to blindly except what I've just told you about human motive. Second, because matching kids to their teachers is but the first step toward creating better classrooms. We also need to improve the way teachers motivate their kids. Thus, the 80 / 15 / 5 plays a big part in bettering kids' motivation.

This said, let's now take a closer look at this week's test, our first example of a "negatively biased" Social Priority test.

Gathering Ralph's Data

This week, I want you to imagine you are once again sitting next to me, this time across from a forty something year old male science teacher, skeptically scientific look and all.

I don't know why, but I love that look. I simply resonate with skeptics, Socrates to Descartes. In fact, for the benefit of making this scene more visual, why don't we call this teacher, "Mr. Descartes." Ralph Descartes.

Again, like last week, I begin with a few brief instructions, starting with telling Ralph that I will be asking him a series of nine short questions. Thus, the test should take us no longer than a few minutes.

Next, I ask that he answer the questions quickly and without mentally considering them. I then add that I'm looking for his first impulse answer only. More important, that for the results to be valid, he needs to answer this way.

Lastly, I remind him that all answers are "right" answers. In other words, on this test, there can be no wrong answers. The questions are simply designed to determine a person's basic personality type. Nothing more.

Now I ask him the first question. In this case, I ask him, "Which is harder, being hungry or being ignorant?"

In our sample test, our teacher chooses the second answer, "ignorant." Thus, in the Choices column, to the right of first question, I circle the second icon; the little yellow Understanding light bulb.

Next question. "Which is harder, losing your day off or losing a day's pay?" Here, our teacher answers, "your day off." So I circle the "F" icon; the little red Freedom butterfly.

Note once more, that the way these questions have been phrased, each question offers a choice between two answers, each separated by the word, "or." Similarly, next to each question, in the Choices column, there are two icons, also separated by the word, "or." I mention this as it is important to remember that the left answer correlates to the left Choice icon. And so on.

At this point, I ask our handsome young science teacher the third question. "Which is worse, a cluttered closet or a dull movie?" His answer? "A dull movie." The second answer. Thus, I now circle the second icon; again, a little yellow Understanding light bulb.

I continue by asking him the remaining three questions, and in turn, circle the corresponding Choice icons.

We now have his answers to the six Social Priority questions, along with six circled icons, one for each of the six questions. In a moment, we'll transfer what we've marked in the Choices column to the left most column of the Answer Matrix. First, though, we'll finish gathering the data, by asking our teacher the three Character Type questions in the sub section all the way to the right.

Again, I remind Mr. Descartes to please answer these questions without mentally considering them. Simply indicate his first impulse. I now ask him the first question. "Would you rather give or get?" "Give," he says. Without pause, I then ask him the second question. "Would you rather not give?" "No," he answers. Finally, I ask him the third question, again without pausing. "Do you mind not getting?" "No," he says.

Here again, notice I've written Ralph's answers in the boxes to the right of these three Character Type questions; "Give," "No," "No." This means our teacher is a Character Type, "two." A "second year of life" person. A "you" type person.

Creating Ralph's Personality Fractal

Now we're ready to create Ralph's Personality Fractal. We'll start by transferring what we've written in the Choices sub section to the Answer Matrix. Again, I want to reassure you that despite the fact that this can, at first, appear to be a bit daunting, it's easy once you get the hang of it.

Before we begin, first notice that the Answer Matrix has three columns, a left column, a middle column, and a right column. Now notice that each column consists of six pairs of vertically stacked boxes. Twelve boxes in each column. Finally, remember there are only four possible answers we can transfer to these boxes; "C," "N," "U," and "F," each of which represents a Social Priority; Comfort, Neatness, Understanding, and Freedom.

Now we're ready to begin transferring our data into the Answer Matrix.

Step One - Filling in the left most Answer Matrix column.
We'll begin by transferring our data from the Choices sub section to the left column of the Answer Matrix. In this case, I begin by copying the letter of the first circled Choice icon, the letter "U," into the top most box of the left Answer column. I then record the letter of the first uncircled Choice icon into the box just below this "U." In this case, I write the letter, "C." Result. The upper most pair of boxes now holds "U" over "C."

Next, I transfer the letter of the circled icon from the second question. In this case, I write the letter "F" in the upper box. I follow this by transferring the letter of the uncircled icon, the letter, "N," into the box just below this "F." Result. Another pair of letters. "F" over "N."

I now transfer the remaining four pairs of Choice icon letters to the left column of the Answer Matrix. In each case, I record the letter of the circled icon in the upper box, followed by the letter of the uncircled icon in the lower box.

Final result. Six vertical pairs of letters in the left Answer Matrix column. "U" over "C." "F" over "N." "U" over "N." "F" over "C." "N" over "C." And "U" over "F." We now have our twelve "raw data" letters, each pair of letters signifying a personal priority.

Step Two - Determining Ralph's First Social Priority.
Now we'll begin to determine Ralph's actual personality matrix. How? By looking for the letter which appears on top three times. In this case, it's the letter, "U."

Our next step will be to create a horizontal row using these three "U" on-top pairs of letters. I begin by writing the second "U" on-top pair into the boxes to the right of the first "U" on-top pair. In this case, I transfer the "U" over "N" pair to boxes in the middle Answer Matrix column, right next to the "U over "C" pair. Then I cross out the "U" over "N" pair in the left column.

Next I copy the third "U" on-top pair into the right Answer Matrix column boxes, this time writing "U" over "F" next to the "U" over "N" pair. I then cross out the "U" over "F" pair in the left Answer Matrix column.

At this point, we have created a horizontal row with three pairs of answers; "U" over "C," "U" over "N," and "U" over "F." This becomes our cross reference, and we now know that Ralph's first Social Priority is Understanding. This means he prefers Understanding over all the other choices. To further remind us of this, I circle the "U" in the right Answer Matrix column.

Step Three - Determining Ralph's Second Social Priority.
Now it's time to determine Ralph's Second Social Priority. How? By looking in the left column of the Answer Matrix for the letter which appears on top twice. In this case, it's the letter, "F." I now transfer the second of these "F" on-top pairs ("F" over "C") into the middle Answer Matrix boxes adjoining the first "F" on-top pair ("F" over "N"). I then cross out the "F" over "C" pair in the left Answer Matrix column.

We now know that Ralph's Second Social Priority is Freedom. To note this, I write an "F" in the third column next to this pair of "F" on-top answers. Then I circle it.

Step Four - Determining Ralph's Third and Fourth Social Priorities. Finally, we are left with determining Ralph's third and fourth Social Priorities. To do this, I simply look to see which of the left column answers contains neither of the two already determined Social Priorities; neither a "U" nor an "F." In this case, I see it is the "N" over "C" pair.

I now transfer this pair from the left column of the Answer Matrix to the right column of the Answer Matrix. I then circle this pair of numbers to indicate they are Ralph's third and fourth Social Priorities.

Step Five - Filling in the Results Section.
Now I begin to transfer these results to the actual Personality Fractal located in the lower right hand corner of the test page. Notice it has two orangey column headings. I begin by writing the letter of Ralph's first Social Priority, "U", into the top right box. Next, I write the letter of his second Social Priority, "F," into box just beneath the "U." Finally, I transfer the letters for his third and fourth Social Priorities, "N" and "C," into the boxes below these first two boxes.

The result? Ralph's Social Priorities are U, F, N, C. This tells us he'd do best with Understanding first kids, and would probably do pretty well with ADD kids (the Freedom second priority).

Lastly, I transfer the three Character Type answers to the left column of the Personality Fractal. Here, I circle the word, "Give," then the word, "nothing."

Interpreting Ralph's Personality Fractal

Let's begin by remembering that Ralph Descartes is a male high school science teacher. Moreover, because this Character Type is a "two," his basic nature is to "give." What exactly does he like to give though? Simple. His first Social Priority. "Understanding."

This makes Ralph a natural teacher. Not that having other first Social Priorities make people poor teachers. It's just that Ralph's first love is learning. Thus he resonates with anyone who wants to learn.

So what would his lessons be like? Well, let's say he is teaching the kids about the Solar System. He might begin by describing an imaginary voyage, either inward to Mercury, or out toward Pluto. He'd, of course, have to preface this with how the ancients thought they might transverse the Solar System, from the ideas of Ptolemy and Galileo, to the amazing discoveries of Newton and Einstein, and so on.

Here, the thing to notice would be that Mr. Descartes's lesson would focus mainly on how people throughout history "understood" the Solar System. Their ideas, to be exact. Including what made them think these ideas and how their ideas affected the way the world understood the Solar System. Including how the world treated them simply because their ideas may have differed from the then currently believed scientific opinions.

Clearly, Ralph's lesson would differ markedly from, say, a Comfort first teacher, whose focus might be on how hot or cold the planets are, or how long the days and nights are, or how long a trip to them might take. Of course, she'd be sure to comment on the discomforts of such a trip; the lack of good food, the limited water, and the artificial light. Hot showers? Oh, God, no! What a drag.

And a Neatness first science teacher? Here, numbers would rule. So this teacher's lesson might focus on things like distances in miles and travel times to the various planets based on various speeds. He might also tell you things like how much you would weight in Earth pounds, say, on Mercury, or on one of Jupiter's moons.

And a Freedom first teacher? In this case, she might say a lot of the same stuff. However, if she spoke about the time it would take to reach a planet, she might focus on how long you'd be trapped in the little tin can. Or on how the scientists of old, such as Galileo, were often persecuted for their ideas, even, at times, costing them their freedom, or their lives.

Closing Comments

So what do you think? Would you want to have Ralph as your high school science teacher? Or would you prefer one of the other three teachers? How about the difference between the positively biased tests and the negatively biased tests? Did you find yourself reacting to this week's questions any differently? More important, did you find yourself unsure still as to what these tests can actually accomplish, and why I am making such a big deal out of them?

Please know, it is very important to me that you do not simply change your mind, unless or until you sense for yourself the value here personally. As I've said, none of what I'm showing you here will do you any good if you simply go along with it. To be useful, then, you will literally have to "recreate" these tests for yourselves. More on what this word, "recreate," means in the coming weeks.

Know the main thing I'm saying here is that no one learns by parroting. Not even parrots. Moreover, to parrot what I've been saying would mean you would never feel sure these ideas are true. Why not? Because I've voiced these tests from my Personality Fractal. Which just happens to be the same Personality Fractal as our teacher this week, Ralph, has; Two, U, F, N, C.

What about the cases I mentioned wherein peoples' answers do not result in a three letter outcome? We'll have to wait to address that question until next week, when I delve more deeply into what these Personality Fractals actually reveal about these teachers' personalities. Including how they reveal peoples' dark sides. Teachers and students alike.

In future weeks, I'll show you how to determine your own Personality Fractal. As well as how to determine the Personality Fractals of the folks closest to you. In part, this will show you a good portion of why these folks are "the closest to you." Perhaps then, you'll see what makes me see these tests as one of the most amazing fractals of all to know. Including how they might actually be able to change our whole educational system.

Until next week then. I hope you're all well,

Steven


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