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An Empirical Study Of Test/Retest Reliability Of The Kiersey Bates Temperament Sorter

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1997 Annual Conference


Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Publication Date

June 15, 1997

Start Date

June 15, 1997

End Date

June 18, 1997



Page Count


Page Numbers

2.66.1 - 2.66.5



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Paper Authors

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Duane Brown

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Dennis Krumwiede

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Jerome P. Lavelle

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 2642

An Empirical Study of Test/Retest Reliability of the Kiersey Bates Temperament Sorter

Jerome Lavelle, Dennis Krumwiede, and Duane Brown Department of Industrial Engineering, Department of Statistics Kansas State University

ABSTRACT This paper discusses the results of an empirical study to investigate the test/retest reliability characteristic of the Kiersey Bates Temperament Sorter (KBTS) personality type indicator. The study was conducted during the fall semester of 1995. Test subjects were undergraduate students in the business, engineering and sociology curricula at Kansas State University. Statistical measures used to provide an indication of reliability included: a percentage agreement comparison, test versus retest correlations, and a correlations comparison. The experimental results indicate that in general the KBTS proved very reliable in terms of test/retest as a personality type indicator. The results of this study are of potential importance to those interested in using the KBTS for personality typing in lieu of, or as a surrogate for, the more popular and widely tested Myers Briggs Type Indicator.

MOTIVATION FOR RESEARCH The motivation for establishing the test/retest reliability characteristic of the Kiersey Bates Temperament Sorter (KBTS) involves research that the authors are undertaking on leadership personality and effectiveness in Total Quality Management (TQM) implementations. There are many applications of the use of personality indicators in the context of TQM. Companies interested in TQM (or Continuous Improvement (CI)) are very interested in the proper use of team centered skills. Increasingly, the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) is being utilized to properly orient and understand people within this team-based environment. Also, as Walton 1 explains, W. Edwards Deming specified that management and company leadership ultimately establish success factors for long term sustenance of a CI philosophy. The authors’ motivation was to ask: Is it legitimate to utilize the KBTS in lieu of the MBTI in conducting research involving TQM and personality? Two issues surface as one asks this question: (1) In the KBTS reliable? and (2) Is the KBTS valid? This paper reports on the first of these two questions.

KBTS AS A PERSONALITY MEASURER The KBTS uses much of the same construct as the MBTI. With the KBTS and MBTI, personality types are derived from four preference scales. These dimensional scales are: Extroversion - Introversion (E-I), Sensation - Intuition (S-N) , Thinking - Feeling (T-F), and Judgment - Perception (J-P). The KBTS uses 70 questions (less than the MBTI) written to test preferences with respect to the four preference scales. There are sixteen unique “personality types” formed from the four personality preference scales (24=16). Example personality types would be: ENTJ,

Brown, D., & Krumwiede, D., & Lavelle, J. P. (1997, June), An Empirical Study Of Test/Retest Reliability Of The Kiersey Bates Temperament Sorter Paper presented at 1997 Annual Conference, Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 10.18260/1-2--6530

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