THE PERSONALITY OF LEARNING AND EDUCATING – LATEST RESEARCH, NEW FRAMEWORKS AND NEW TECHNOLOGIES
The field of education is focused on building learning experiences for students. Similarly, the concept of individualised education is considered key. However, despite this focus on the individual and learning systems there is scant research into personality of educators and learners alike.
Usage of personality assessments is not a standard procedure and many that are used are based on old frameworks some of which are not empirically supported (Grant 2013). Similarly, the technologies that these use have remained the same for over half a century with the only fundamental change being moving to online systems.
We propose first that personality can be considered through a holistic framework that maps personality, to strengths, to values and to well-being. These are interrelated concepts but are mostly considered separate entities with different assessments measuring these.
Secondly there are various aspects of personality that according to the framework we propose are rarely measured such as boredom, or habituation in neuroscience terms, which reflects the speed with which stimuli fails to excite a response (Rankin et al. 2009). This is a fundamental mechanism of cells, the human brain and hence learning. Another weakness with traditional assessments is that some abilities and traits such as cognition and intuition have been considered a sliding scale. A person high in cognition is considered low on intuition and vice versa. This is however not reflective in data that we have collected. We see that high performers in entrepreneurship, business and education tend to have high cognition and high intuition (see also Moxley et al. 2012). Another aspect is that there is rarely longitudinal data collected on individuals. We know that some individuals change, and some do not – we therefore propose stability of personality as a data point to be measured. We know that there is considerable change through adolescence (Ganiban et al. 2008) and this raises the importance of multiple or ongoing assessments over time.
Thirdly the technologies that are used remain similar – self-report questionnaires are standard with some third-person reporting. However, we know that other methods and technologies can be just as good or better: games provide opportunities and are often used in online dating to match partners – which has become leading in data collection on personalities and cohesion (Frew 2017). Other technologies have been identified such as the movement when holding a smart phone predicting nervousness.
Using structured personality assessments matched over time with new technologies can benefit educators and students alike increasing awareness, role matching, career and curriculum decisions not to mention personal development and team cohesion and this can be delivered through new technologies making the process painless, efficient and more accurate over time. This can also help educators administrators and individuals to have more accurate information to make better decisions for themselves and others.