Gordon Allport Values ​​Test (or Study)

The Values ​​Study, a personality test developed by Gordon Allport, Philip Vernon and Gardner Lindzey, was one of the first psychological instruments to be developed for the purpose of assessing personal values ​​or basic motivations. In this article, we will analyze the content, the mode of application and the variables that this test measures.

    The study of Allport’s values

    The American psychologist Gordon William Allport (1897-1967) is known primarily for his personal theory, one of the earliest attempts to explain personality human psychology, emphasizing the individuality of each human being and the active aspect of our nature, which drives us to achieve goals.

    In 1931, Allport, along with Philip E. Vernon and Gardner Lindzey, published a Personal Values ​​Rating Scale, which can also be understood as basic motivations. This test was based directly on the book “Types of Men” by the philosopher Eduard Spranger and its creators called it “the study of values”.

    Allport believes that a good way to analyze a particular individual’s personality is to assess their moral values. In this sense, he attached much more importance to the present hour than to personal history, in which concentrated the psychoanalytic orientation, which dominated the psychology of the time.

    The purpose of the Allport et al test is to determine the relative weight they have for a given individual six types of values: theoretical, economic, aesthetic, social, political and religious, What Spranger considered fundamental. Later, we will describe in detail the definition of each of these basic motivations.

      Content and method of application of the test

      The Allport test consists of two parts. The first is made up of dichotomous questions; for example, item 24 (“Which of these books would you choose?”) includes the answer options “A) History of religion” and “B) History of industrial development”. Currently, each item has four response options depending on the intensity of the preference.

      The second part contains approaches with four response options that they should be sorted according to the relative degree of preference. So, in point number 9. (“What topic would you prefer to discuss in a meeting with close friends?”) The options “A) The meaning of life”, “B) The latest scientific developments”, “C ) Literature “and” D) Socialism “.

      The total number of test items is 240: in the first part, 90 points are awarded to one or the other of the evaluated values, while in the second, 150 points are distributed according to the way they are assessed. were ordered the answer. options for each of the elements.

      The study of values ​​can be applied both individually and collectively (that is, to several people at the same time). Although there is no time limit for completing the test, candidates should try to answer questions more or less quickly. It is important to mention that the test was designed for people with higher education degrees.

        The 6 values ​​reflected in the test

        The results of the study of values ​​consist in obtaining six scores, one for each of the basic motivations treated by Spranger, as well as by Allport and its collaborators. The comparison between the scores of the two variables indicates the importance of each of these values ​​(or behavioral tendencies) for the person.

        1. Theoretical

        People with a high score on the theoretical value they want to find out the truth about thingsThat is to say obtaining ordered and systematized knowledge thanks to logical and empirical criteria.

        2. Economical

        Economic value is associated with focus on material and practice. This includes the accumulation of goods and the saving of energy. the utilitarian conception of relationships with others.

        3. Aesthetics

        Those who score high on this motivation appreciate it beauty, harmony and formal aspects of reality, Which is somehow opposed to the theoretical value. Your personal satisfaction arises from creating and / or contemplating aesthetic experiences.

        4. Social

        The main motivation of these people is to have the company of others, and helping others is their core value. High scores on this variable they indicate altruism, kindness, compassion and generosity.

        5. Politician

        In this case, the main motivation is to obtain power and control over the behavior of other individuals; this is associated with leadership. Knowledge is seen as a means to achieve such a goal.

          6. Religious

          According to Allport, people ruled for religious reasons they guide their behavior based on their spiritual beliefs and ethics. The definition of this value and the elements that compose it are ambiguous and are probably the best example of the negative impact that time has had on the study of values.

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