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Adapting Instruction to Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) Learning Styles

Instructor: Christine Serva

Christine is an instructional designer, educator, and writer with a particular interest in the social sciences and American studies.

The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator can give insight into four pairs of personality preferences. Take a brief look at how you can accommodate these styles when you are serving students with a mix of personality types.

Different Personalities, Different Preferences

Have you ever encountered a person who seemed to operate completely different than you do? Perhaps the other person loved going to social events while you prefer to spend time by yourself. Neither preference is better than the other. You and the other person are simply different. You'll learn differently, too, based on these and other preferences.

This lesson explores the personality preferences described by the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) inventory and how you can teach students with a range of MBTI characteristics.

Introversion/Extraversion

Imagine you love being around other people as much as possible. Parties and social events are right where you want to be. In all likelihood, you are more extraverted and find these experiences energizing.

On the other hand, what if you find yourself pooped after just 10 minutes at a social gathering? You try to find out if someone needs help in the kitchen, hoping to have a moment's peace from the chatter. Maybe you sneak out early and relish the quiet once you get in your own home. You may very well be more introverted.

Not every extravert loves parties and not every introvert digs a quiet house, but in general, these characteristics describe the attributes of those who lean more towards one end of the spectrum.

What if you have students who are more extraverted? They'll likely need contact with one another in order to stay motivated and attentive and be willing to be put on the spot at times if it connects them with the world outside their own minds. For example, many extraverts would like a chance to talk and listen to others in class, so opportunities to speak up and interact are important.

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