Class Activity: Understanding the MBTI Group Activity

Document created by Bethany Gordon Employee on Sep 23, 2016Last modified by Bethany Gordon Employee on Sep 28, 2016
Version 2Show Document
  • View in full screen mode

Note: This activity does not require taking the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI).


Divide the classroom in half and label each side of the room. For example, the left side of the room can be for students who are “Extravert (E),” and the other side of the room can be for students who are “Introvert (I).” Begin reading the characteristics of Extraverts and Introverts (see the following list of “Dichotomy Characteristics”). Ask the students to choose which characteristic best describes them and to stand on that side of the room. Allow those students who cannot decide to place themselves either in the middle of the room or closer to one side, depending on where they think they fall on the spectrum.


After the students have positioned themselves around the room, have a short discussion by asking each group what they think of the group on the other side of the room. Give each group a chance to speak before moving on to each dichotomy. Here are some questions you might ask:


  1. What do you like least (or find annoying) about the other trait?
  2. What do you like most (or admire) about the other trait?
  3. What possible sources or conflict could occur in a work setting when dealing with people who have the other trait?


Be sure to involve the students who chose the middle of the room in the discussion. You may want to ask them to explain why they think they fall in the middle of the spectrum.


Do the same for the other pairs of traits. Consider asking the students to write down which MBTI letter they chose for each dichotomy. When finished, they can add up the four letters and determine their “perceived” MBTI. If the students do the actual MBTI later, they can compare the results to their perceptions and discuss if they are the same.


Dichotomy Characteristics


Outgoing, gregarious, talkative (may talk too much)Shy, reflective, careful listeners
People of action (may act before they think)Consider actions deeply (may think too long before acting or neglect to act at all)
Energized by people and activityRefreshed by quiet and privacy
Good communicators and leadersLess likely to voice their opinions; often viewed as unaware of people and situations around them



Sensing Types
Intuitive Types
Interested above all the facts, what they can be sure of; dislike unnecessary complication; prefer practicing skills they already knowFascinated by concepts and big ideas; prefer learning new skills over those already mastered
Relatively traditional and conventionalOriginal, creative, and nontraditional
Practical, factual, realistic, and down-to-earthInnovative but sometimes impractical; need inspiration and meaning; prefer to look to the future rather than at the present
Accurate, precise, and effective with routine and details; sometimes miss the "forest" for the "trees"May exaggerate facts unknowingly; dislike routine and details; work in bursts of energy



Thinking TypesFeeling Types
Logical, rational, analytical, and criticalWarm, empathetic, and sympathetic
Relatively impersonal and objective in making decisions; less swayed by feelings and emotions; sometimes surprised and puzzled by others' feelingsNeed and value harmony; often distressed or distracted by argument and conflict; reluctant to tackle unpleasant interpersonal tasks
Need and value fairness; can deal with interpersonal disharmonyNeed and value kindness and harmony
Fair, logical, and just; firm and assertiveFacilitate cooperation and goodwill in others; sometimes unable to be assertive when appropriate
May seem cold, insensitive, and overly blunt and hurtful in their criticismsOccasionally illogical, emotionally demanding, and unaffected by objective reason and evidence



Judging TypesPerceiving Types
Orderly, organized, punctual, and tidySpontaneous and flexible
In control of their own world and sphere of influenceAdapt to their world rather than try to control it; comfortable dealing with changes and unexpected developments
Quick decision makers; like to make and follow plansSlow to make decisions; prefer a wait-and-see approach
Sometimes judgemental and prone to jump to conclusions or make decisions without enough information; have trouble changing plansTendency toward serious procrastination and juggling too many things at once without finishing anything; sometimes messy and disorganized