Eysenck Personality Questionnaire

What is the Eysenck Personality Questionnaire?

Eysenck Personality Questionnaire is a questionnaire used to analyze the personality traits of a person. It was devised by psychologists Hans Jürgen Eysenck and Sybil B. G. Eysenck. Hans Eysenck was a behaviorist, so he strongly believed in the importance of learned habits. But he also believed a person’s personality is determined by his genetic inheritance. So he developed this Eysenck Personality questionnaire, basically considering the temperament-based theory. The temperament-based theory takes two aspects into consideration: Extroversion-Introversion and Neuroticism-Stability. But he didn’t completely exclude the possibility that some aspects of personality are learned but left considering these to other researchers.

EPQ quote

Initially, the EPQ is based on the two biologically-based dimensions of personality, E and N. Still, later, the third dimension of Psychoticism and Socialisation is added by the researchers who took it further. The current EPQ is a 48 item questionnaire, which aims at identifying the personality of an individual.

What does an Eysenck Personality Questionnaire measure?

Every personality test works based on the Five-factor model of personality. Likewise, the EPQ instrument is developed based on three important dimensions, namely,

dimensions of epq
  1. Extroversion- Introversion: Extroverts are people with a highly positive attitude, easily socializable, outgoing, and talkative. They need an external stimulus to keep them motivated and get going. On the other hand, introverts are quiet, calm, and less outgoing; they don’t need an external stimulus to stay motivated. Most people fall in the midrange of the extraversion/introversion continuum, an area called ambiversion.
  2. Neuroticism-Stability: Neuroticism or emotionality is characterized by high levels of negative affect such as depression and anxiety. According to Eysenck's theory, neuroticism is based on activation thresholds in the sympathetic nervous system or visceral brain. This is the part of the brain responsible for the fight-or-flight response in the face of danger. So people on this site may get easily react to every emotion they come across. On the other, Stability is characterized by more emotional stability, calm, and composed under pressure kind of attitude. Emotional Stability is one of the most important dimensions of human personality traits.
  3. Psychoticism-socialization: Psychoticism is associated with the liability to have a psychotic episode (or break with reality) and aggression. Psychotic behavior is rooted in the characteristics of toughmindedness, non-conformity, inconsideration, recklessness, hostility, anger, and impulsiveness. The physiological basis suggested by Eysenck for psychoticism is testosterone, with higher levels of psychoticism associated with higher levels of testosterone.

Eysenck Personality Questionnaire scoring:

The EPQ is an instrument with 48 questions basically in its short form; this is the one developed by Hans Eysenck, but when other researchers added more dimensions to it, the EPQ-Revised version is formed, it consists of 100 questions. The short form EPQ is most widely used; these questions are “Yes” or “No” type; unlike other personality tests, it doesn’t use a 5 or 6 points Likert scale. So it is easy to take this personality test. The scores of Extroversion and Neuroticism are calculated individually, and it can reveal how much of an extrovert and neurotic you are.

There are various studies conducted over the internal consistency of the EPQ; the Extroversion and Neuroticism scales are found to be more reliable than the Psychoticism scale. So the scale is more reliable in giving consistent results when measured.

Conclusion

Analyzing your personality and knowing your strengths and weaknesses are always helpful in developing a more refined version of yours. The Eysenck Personality Questionnaire is one of the finest tools to analyze your personality in a more evidence-based scientific approach. It has been widely used by mental health practitioners and researchers to narrow down individuals' personality traits and help them solve personality-related issues.

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