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Teaching by Style: Profiling Online Instructors Using the MBTI: 

Teaching by Style: Profiling Online Instructors Using the MBTI ALN Conference November, 2000 Dr.Rena Faye Norby Dr. Sharon Strand Black Hills State University Spearfish, SD

Who, When, What: 

Who, When, What TTL for In-service Teachers Faculty K-12/Higher Ed first year All K-12 faculty the next year Fall - Spring, 1999 andamp; 2000 Internet Based Courses Follow-on Courses for Technology for Teaching and Learning (TTL) Academies Delivered by WebCT

Online Challenges: 

Online Challenges First year: Students andamp; instructors new andamp; uneasy in this environment Online tutorial provided, but not everyone used it Both years – not all faculty had met their students face-to-face

Course Designers Noticed...: 

Course Designers Noticed... Year One - There appeared to be a connection between personality style and adaptability to On-Line instruction Year Two – Wondered if there would be a difference with all K-12 Instructors

Why Were These Studies Done?: 

Why Were These Studies Done? Explore Personality Styles of On-Line Instructors Integrate Previous Research on the Myers-Briggs and the Gregorc Inventories Offer Guidelines and Suggestions for Faculty Development Replicate Results of First Year

The Instruments: 

The Instruments Gregorc Transactional Ability Inventory Myers-Briggs Type Indicator

Gregorc Transaction Styles: 

Gregorc Transaction Styles Concrete Sequential (CS) Abstract Sequential (AS) Abstract Random (AR) Concrete Random (CR) FOR MORE INFO...

Myers-Briggs Type Indicators: 

Myers-Briggs Type Indicators Introvert/Extrovert Sensing/iNtuitive Thinking/Feeling Perceiving/Judging

What’s Your Style?: 

What’s Your Style?


FACE-To-FACE….. Now, take a few minutes to complete your Gregorc Inventory ...

First Year Survey Results: 

First Year Survey Results 76% of respondents found the experience exciting, stimulating, and frustrating 82% expressed interest in teaching online again

First Year Results (cont.): 

First Year Results (cont.) MBTI 'J’s' were least likely to enjoy teaching on line Gregorc 'Random’s' (either Concrete or Abstract) were most likely to enjoy the online teaching experience

Adapting Your Style: 

Adapting Your Style

Myers-Briggs Type Indicators: 

Myers-Briggs Type Indicators

Extrovert Strengths: 

Extrovert Strengths Prefers dialogue and cooperative study; Prefers variety and activity; Welcomes interruptions

Possible Problems for Extroverts: 

Possible Problems for Extroverts Prefers dialogue and discussion; Likes having people around; Prefers face to face discussion over written communication; Often acts quickly without thinking; Often impatient with slow moving tasks

Introvert Strengths : 

Introvert Strengths Prefer lectures; Prefer little interpersonal involvement; Require quiet for concentration; Like working alone; Like to think before taking action; Like to communicate one-on-one; Tend to work for long periods of time

Possible Problems for Introverts : 

Possible Problems for Introverts Does not like to be interrupted

Sensing Strengths: 

Sensing Strengths Prefers step-by-step and traditional curricula; Likes realistic applications; Enjoys applying what is already known by giving examples and details; Likes to follow an agenda; Seldom makes errors of facts

Possible Problems for Sensing Types: 

Possible Problems for Sensing Types Prefers structure May ignore or not trust inspirations; Likes to do practical things; Less willing to adopt new methods

Intuitive Strengths : 

Intuitive Strengths Likes self instruction and independent study; Likes change; Prefers global schemes; Likes solving new and complex problems; Likes the novel, the unusual, the innovative; Most likely to be visionaries seeing new possibilities in change

Possible Problems for Intuitives : 

Possible Problems for Intuitives Prefers focusing on concepts; Likes change; Enjoys learning new skills more than using them; Is willing to follow insights; May make errors of fact; Do not have a high need for structure

Thinking Strengths : 

Thinking Strengths Prefers teacher directed activities and lecture; Can work without harmony; Feels rewarded by finishing a task; Seeks involvement with tasks; Presents goals and objectives first

Possible Problems for Thinking Types: 

Possible Problems for Thinking Types Likes to do peer work; Gives criticism well; Feels rewarded by finishing a task; Tends to be brief and concise

Feeling Strengths: 

Feeling Strengths Tends to be sympathetic; Feels rewarded when people's needs are met; Is sociable and friendly.

Possible Problems for Feeling Types: 

Possible Problems for Feeling Types Prefers simulations or case studies; Uses small group work; Uses values to reach conclusions; Works best in harmony; Seeks involvement with people

Judging Strengths: 

Judging Strengths Prefers formalized instruction; Works best when they can plan their work; Likes to get things settled and finished; Seeks structure and deadlines; Focuses on the task

Possible Problems for Judging Types: 

Possible Problems for Judging Types Prefers a predictable routine; Likes tradition; Works best when they can follow the plan; Reaches closure quickly; Expects others to follow through

Perceiving Strengths: 

Perceiving Strengths Prefers independent study programs; Likes flexibility; Looks for different options before making a decision; Adapts well to changes;

Possible Problems for Perceiving Types: 

Possible Problems for Perceiving Types Prefers less structured programs Likes flexibility; Likes leaving things open for last minute changes; Postpones unpleasant tasks; Feels restricted without opportunity for change; Focuses on the process; Expects others to change and adapt

Gregorc's Transactional Ability Inventory: 

Gregorc's Transactional Ability Inventory This Inventory Is Used to Describe Adult Methods of Transacting With Their Environments

Concrete Sequential Strengths : 

Concrete Sequential Strengths Uses step-by-step methods of instruction; Needs a quiet instructional environment; Plans and organizes time and space; Knows the acceptable ways of doing things and performs accordingly;

Concrete Sequential Strengths: 

Concrete Sequential Strengths Uses facts and focuses on details; Is consistent and efficient; Creates real and practical products; Stresses cognitive domain in learning

AR (abstract random) : 

AR (abstract random) Look for the trees in the forest Become aware of and focus on critical time limits for self and cyber learners Attend to important details and student needs Explain fully and clearly before assuming cyber learners will understand

CR (concrete random): 

CR (concrete random) Learn to prioritize when designing on-line coursework Persevere and follow-through when managing an internet-based class Learn how to pace self and the course flow

AS (abstract sequential): 

AS (abstract sequential) Lighten up and be less concerned with perfection Be willing to try teaching on-line and coping with the challenge of working cooperatively in group discussions Work on facing the unpredictable (which technology can be!)


Final Results of This Year’s Survey ** There was a 25% return rate – possibly due to K-12 instructors who are very busy at the time of year the survey was distributed and lost the paperwork before they could return it ** this year’s respondents were enthusiastic about on-line teaching in the future ** no MBTI 'J’s' appeared in this year’s results ** K-12 teachers routinely work 2 jobs due to low salaries – this may have been a positive experience because it afforded some extra income ** The respondents were all 'AR' or 'CR' on the Gregorc – these people are optimistic, and flexible!

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