Strong Interest Inventory: Realistic Theme & Basic Interest Scales

Taylor MicaelaAssessments, Careers, STRONG

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Strong Interest Inventory Realistic Theme Explained

The Basic Interest Scales of the Strong Interest Inventory test are divided into different themes based on their fundamental premises and base ideas.  This week, we’ll look at what interests and preferences align with the Realistic Theme, which includes the Basic Interest Scales of Mechanics & Construction, Computer Hardware & Electronics, Military, Protective Services, Nature & Agriculture, and Athletics.

Those who score high in the Realistic Theme often enjoy working logically with their hands or bodies, usually exerting themselves during their chosen activities of interest. This can be seen in several of the Basic Interest Scales (BIS), including Mechanics and Construction. People who aligned themselves with this  BIS usually enjoy the act of creating or repairing something with big-scale machinery or meticulous small tools, oftentimes on their own as opposed to with a team.

Similarly, those who scored high in the Computer Hardware & Electronics BIS are interested in the precision and diligence that comes with designing, repairing, or working on computers and networks. They enjoy working independently, establishing their own ideas and carrying out tasks effectively on their own. Oftentimes, because of the similar nature of the work, those who score high on this BIS also score high with Mechanics & Construction.

The Military BIS is usually associated with those who enjoy a specific level of authority in their lives, including regimented and organized hierarchies of influence. Others who score high in this BIS usually enjoy taking on a leadership role and exerting this authority on their inferiors. They are interested in taking risks and accomplishing things readily, although a person’s association with this scale does not mean that they are a fit for a military occupation.

The Protective Services BIS is associated with those who are interested in the safety of others and their community. They prefer taking risks to playing it safe, and find that their strengths really shine in emergency situations.

Those who scored high in the Nature & Agriculture BIS enjoy working with their hands outdoors, in aspects such as gardening, animal handling, and farming. They are interested in the cycles of the natural world as well as seeing their work pay off. They prefer to spend their time in nature, whether while working or in their free time.

The Athletics BIS is usually aligned with those who enjoy team settings, physical exertion, and competition. Whether they enjoy partaking in sports or acting as a spectator, those who score high in this BIS enjoy the physicality that comes with learning in sports, as opposed to that of learning from books or teachers.

Through the similarities of these Basic Interest Scales of the Strong Interest Inventory, we can see that the Realistic Theme involves individuals who enjoy working with their hands, whether in a structured setting with others or independently. Their interests and preferences are often focused on designing, creating, repairing, or protecting, and they often find happiness in careers associated with the sciences, engineering, policing, and manual labor—careers that take a certain level of logic and tactile reasoning.

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Strong Interest Inventory Manual Revised Edition, Donnay et al., 2005, CPP

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