The Strong Interest Inventory ® Test and Personal Style Scales

In Careers, Personality Type, Strong Interest Inventory by Jonathan Bollag, Owner and Founder

The Strong Interest Inventory® test includes a detailed section scored to assess how people learn, work, play, and live named The Personal Style Scales. Comparatively speaking, less than the other parts of the Strong Interest Inventory Sections that assess educational and work settings, at times, the Personal Style Scale, or PSS, can assess how people prefer to work and learn in general (CPP, 2005).

There are five Personal Style Scales and these consist of:

  1. Work style
  2. Learning Environment
  3. Leadership style
  4. Risk taking
  5. Team orientation

The scoring result behind these five scales lie in two opposite measurements, or what is known as poles.  Those people who complete The Strong Interest Inventory test and score in the following manner would have the following results in conjunction with the five Personal Style Scales:

A score of 55 and above on the work style scale would mean that the assessment taker would generally work with ideas/data and should search for an occupation that coincides with this result. A score of 45 and below would generally sort an assessment taker in a category of persons who enjoy working with others. We can see how a low score on the work style PSS can coincide at times with the extroverted type on The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator® test as the extroverted type also enjoys working with others. Those that score in the mid-range between 46 and 54 usually occur for people who have no preference for one PSS or the other, and usually are okay with both sides of the pole.

The learning environment style scale places an assessment taker either with a 55 and above as practical or 45 and below as academic, or as stated above within the mid-range which coincides with no particular preference either way.

A high score in the leadership style scale is reserved for those that lead by example, while lower scorers usually prefer to direct others.

The risk taking scale is scored with the higher scorers playing it safe and the lower scorers preferring to take more chances.

Higher scorers in the team orientation scale coincide with those assessment takers who accomplish tasks independently while lower scorers accomplish tasks as a team.

In reference to the work style scale, some sample occupations for those that score lower then 45 and tend to prefer to work with people include:

  • Special Education Teacher
  • Community Service Director
  • Human resource Manager
  • Sales Manager

Those that score above 55 on the work styles scale and typically work with ideas /data and things prefer to work in the following areas:

  • Biologist
  • Chemist
  • Computer Scientist
  • Geologist
  • R & D Manager

The Strong Interest Inventory test Personal Style Scale learning environment practical pole includes people who prefer to learn in more practical settings and show interest in health care service, technical, protective service, and office-related activities. The practical pole usually includes students who study areas such as accounting, finance, business, engineering, and computer technology. On the other side of the practical pole one will find the academic pole which usually includes people who tend to learn in academic settings and show interest in verbal and research settings. In addition, students who score in the academic pole area usually have a major that includes an emphasis in cultural/artistic, verbal, research, language, literature, history, journalism, physical sciences, and social sciences (CPP, 2005).

The Strong Interest Inventory test leadership style scale directing others pole includes those who show interest in politics and public speaking, marketing, advertising, and management. While the opposite pole, the leading by example pole, includes those persons who usually show interest in mechanics, construction, science, computer hardware, electronics, and mathematics.

The Strong Interest Inventory test risk taking scale includes persons who prefer to take chances and risks and those who prefer to play it safe. Risk taking in this category can include emotional and social risks as well as physical safety risks as higher risk taking hobbies, financial risks (playing the stock market), exotic destination travel, auto racing etc. Occupations in high-risk categories include firefighters, military officers, realtors, and law enforcement officers. Occupations included in the playing it safe pole usually feel fulfilled by following career path similar to being a college instructor, musician, librarian, administrative assistant, speech pathologist etc. (CPP, 2005).

The Team Orientation Strong Interest Inventory test  Personal Style Scale includes those that prefer to partake in team activities and those that prefer to work more independently. Those that score high in this area tend to prefer to work in teams and take interest in areas such as human resources, training, management, marketing, and advertising. The opposite pole, the accomplished task independent pole, includes people who prefer to work more independently and take interest in areas such as visual arts, design, nature, agriculture, and science. It is important to point out that those that score high in the accomplished task independently pole have not shown an inability to succeed in team settings.

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