Mental Health & Education Part 4

Personality tests help students determine majors and careers

Nicholas Enoch

Applying to colleges and finding that place you can call home can be a challenge. Finding that perfect major that can reflect a student’s passion may be the biggest challenge any college student faces.

Teachers and advisors tell their students to find a major that will relate to their personality and something that they want to pursue once they graduate from college. Students are often given personality tests in which their results can be correlated to what major would fit best for them.

According to an article by Business Insider, the author states that psychologists use the Big 5 Scale by testing students to measure what personality type they are and what major could fit best for them based on their Big 5 scores and results.

The Big 5 Scale consists of five different characteristic traits; extroversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, openness, and neuroticism. All five have varying results of what majors would fit best depending on the results. Teachers and advisors like to administer these tests to their students for them to think about what personality would best fit for their major.

Some of these tests have been proven to be inaccurate because most students simply tend to study what works best for them. However, for the most part, a student’s personality trait identified by the test does seem to ultimately work well with a specific career.

Charlotte Gatewood, a CCBC Essex Student, said, “I am currently involved in the sciences and I am an introvert but I love learning Japanese…It is a more social area of study, so I feel my personality is mixed between staying introverted and being open.”

From Environmental Science to Art, a student’s personality can relate heavily to what they personally want to study. If someone is an Art Major, a student would tend to be very creative and be labeled “agreeable” to different types of experiences. A Science Major would be more theoretical and agreeable like the arts.

According to an article by Science Alert, the author explained that, “There were two studies in Vedel's review… Suggesting that it's our personalities that drive us to seek out certain courses.”

Psychologists all over the country continue to study how personality leads students to take certain courses and majors based on their results from the Big 5 Personality Test and other similar instruments.

Teachers, advisors, and psychologists find it necessary to distribute these personality tests to students and patients alike, to determine what personality traits they have and how that would relate to their studies or their potential job in the future.

These tests will continue to be distributed and teachers will continue to test their students on how they interact with people inside and outside of school. Psychologists find it necessary to use these tests to determine for students how their results can help them find their major of study and ultimately a career that is right for them.

For more information on taking a personality test at CCBC contact the Office of Academic Advising or The Career Services Center on your campus.

*Note: This is the fourth article in a series on education and mental health.

2 comments

  1. Dino 20 October, 2019 at 21:42 Reply

    I think there is some truth to these personality tests, but I do not think they are necessarily reliable. Sure, you can be very creative and a personality test may tell you to pursue a major in art. However, people will be more inclined to get a major in something that is guarantee to make them money. The current state of college and education revolves around getting a degree that can make you money. People are not studying to learn anymore, they are studying to get a good grade then to forget the info. It is almost a stigma to follow your passion. If you were to announce to people that you were an art major in a conversation, you would certainly get a different reaction then someone who says they major in business or engineering.

  2. Lauren Curry 20 October, 2019 at 23:50 Reply

    This article is interesting in the way that these personality tests are not talked about often, but seem to work well in finding what people want to do for careers. I personally think I would benefit from a test like this because I am unsure of what I want to do for a living. This approach to employment is intriguing, and should be used often, as long as the tests are changed in a way that benefits the approach itself.

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