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Thread: Scientific Socionics

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    Default Scientific Socionics

    http://skeptoid.com/podcast.xml

    Skeptoid #114 goes into transmuting things into science.

    Socionics has the potential to make falsifiable, measurable claims, eg "Some relationships release certain stress-reducing chemicals."

    Essentially I think measuring physiological changes is the easiest way to measure Socionics, and certainly the most scientific, but this somewhat degrades it into common sense--some people are stressful, some people are exciting, some people are relaxing. Socionics does have an advantage in that it hypothesises the characteristics of the people involved in the relationship have some bearing on these measurable, physiological changes in state.
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    Yes, going the physiological route would take Socionics on a "hard" science route. Meaning, any predictive claims made by Socionics are verified by repeatable physiological reactions to stimuli (Supervision relations should be more stressful over time than duality, for example). Going the hard science route would diminish the value of Socionics and integrating Socionics concepts into the social sciences such as psychology, sociology etc would better preserve the essence of the theory IMO.

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    The eternal problem I see with socionics experiments is that certainty of individuals types is impossible. Look at our own board and you see people who can't type themselves and many who disagree on others' types. If you can't figure out type then you can't have any validity.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bardia View Post
    The eternal problem I see with socionics experiments is that certainty of individuals types is impossible. Look at our own board and you see people who can't type themselves and many who disagree on others' types. If you can't figure out type then you can't have any validity.
    That's the eternal problem of every science. Something that's held true today may be completely debunked in the future.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MisterNi View Post
    That's the eternal problem of every science. Something that's held true today may be completely debunked in the future.
    Ya. There's also a physiognomy aspect to Socionics, such as body movements and characteristic expressions.

    Turning Socionics claims into falsifiable predictions is the step forward and it's a shame nobody with a science background has been around to do this.

    If we preserve the soft science aspect of Socionics, one good question to ask, I guess, is

    Why does interviewing work, but testing fail?

    imo this would help quantify what, exactly, Socionics is modelling. Informational proclivities? Similarity between previously encountered individuals?
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    Essentially I think measuring physiological changes is the easiest way to measure Socionics, and certainly the most scientific
    socionics the disease

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    people systematically underestimate the amount of things that can be measured
    Last edited by Trevor; 08-10-2011 at 09:54 AM.

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    The only problem with soconics is that its too intellectual. Smart people that simply need more people skills and socialization are attracted to it.

    Yes, you say emotions are weaknesses. Sometimes they are, sometimes they aren't it depends on the millisecond you're dealing with.

    The problem with not being emotional is that you can't move up the emotional scale and ends up hurting JUST YOU. You are actually very depressed but instead of changing how you feel, you keep trying to just change how you think, which is just an ego defense mechanism to argue with people.... going nowhere. Then other people fight with you until you change your emotions, making you realize what you're doing exactly, to both yourself and other people. This is a harsh 'waking up process' that gets you out of yourself and more connected with the world.

    You could argue with this. So I have to be sociopathic enough to get under your skin until you start crying and making you realize how you're coming across emotionally to people...because you can always egoically argue with everything I say, no matter how right I am.

    Thinking has always been the defense mechanism for feeling. Feelings are let's face it...hard for us to deal with it, they really suck and make us feel as 'low' as they do high but we can't feel the highs without the lows. And so socionists over think, making their mothers and the few people that they actually 'let in' really care about them enough to shake them out of their neurosis. Until they are emotionally healthy they just aren't going to succeed at anything they do and that just requires practice and exposure and experience.

    It's not just having high self-esteem. That is a part of it but its also being hurt enough to realize that your self-esteem needed a boost to begin with.... ie it's about getting you out of your damn head.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Analyst Trevor View Post
    people systematically underestimate the amount of things that can be measured
    yes, especially on this forum.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MisterNi View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Bardia View Post
    The eternal problem I see with socionics experiments is that certainty of individuals types is impossible. Look at our own board and you see people who can't type themselves and many who disagree on others' types. If you can't figure out type then you can't have any validity.
    That's the eternal problem of every science. Something that's held true today may be completely debunked in the future.
    Yes, but man's opinion does not affect the outcome of experimentation. In the case of typing, we are completely reliant on our observations and their relation to a structure so ambiguous that you couldn't well compare it to any natural science structure that is in use today, leading us to inject personal prejudice into the structure to fill the holes of understanding.
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    i think one could treat socionics scientifically and there is probably value in doing so, but it would be a hell of a lot of hard work and the theory would be completely transformed by the process such that 99% of the claims would end up being reformulated.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat King Cole View Post
    http://skeptoid.com/podcast.xml
    Socionics has the potential to make falsifiable, measurable claims, eg "Some relationships release certain stress-reducing chemicals."

    Essentially I think measuring physiological changes is the easiest way to measure Socionics, and certainly the most scientific, but this somewhat degrades it into common sense--some people are stressful, some people are exciting, some people are relaxing. Socionics does have an advantage in that it hypothesises the characteristics of the people involved in the relationship have some bearing on these measurable, physiological changes in state.
    Quote Originally Posted by MisterNi View Post
    Yes, going the physiological route would take Socionics on a "hard" science route. Meaning, any predictive claims made by Socionics are verified by repeatable physiological reactions to stimuli (Supervision relations should be more stressful over time than duality, for example). Going the hard science route would diminish the value of Socionics and integrating Socionics concepts into the social sciences such as psychology, sociology etc would better preserve the essence of the theory IMO.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cat King Cole View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by MisterNi View Post
    That's the eternal problem of every science. Something that's held true today may be completely debunked in the future.
    Ya. There's also a physiognomy aspect to Socionics, such as body movements and characteristic expressions.

    Turning Socionics claims into falsifiable predictions is the step forward and it's a shame nobody with a science background has been around to do this.

    If we preserve the soft science aspect of Socionics, one good question to ask, I guess, is

    Why does interviewing work, but testing fail?

    imo this would help quantify what, exactly, Socionics is modelling. Informational proclivities? Similarity between previously encountered individuals?
    excellent. fantastic thoughts.

    in my opinion a study of physiological markers is unlikely to be very practical, and there is no need for that. also in my opinion, the most practical scenario, both from a data collection standpoint and from a suitability standpoint, is evaluating the random assignment of freshman college roommates. in this context evaluating physiological markers would be challenging; it would be much simpler to give people assessments saying things like "my roommate and i find it easy to talk to each other" or whatnot, and also measuring the number of people who end up hating their roommates and having to get roommate changes.


    this issue of creating a standardized and functional assessment that measures the thing we would like it to measure is by far the most challenging aspect of this research. in principle i think any written assessment should be directed towards making sense of quadra values, as a much simpler and more meaningful (in my interpretation, most relations boil down to quadra values anyway) measure to begin with. in the optimal case, measuring quadra values by self-report (and doing a lot of comparative study from people's types we think we know to make sure that our assessment works the way we want it to) will end up corresponding to what we think of new people's types enough so that we can use it without having to figure out a structured interview assessment paradigm that can actually work. that's as far as my personal train of thought has gone on this, which is a complex problem.

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    Quote Originally Posted by labcoat View Post
    i think one could treat socionics scientifically and there is probably value in doing so, but it would be a hell of a lot of hard work and the theory would be completely transformed by the process such that 99% of the claims would end up being reformulated.
    yeah, and besides, it works terribly well IRL already, so it just sounds like a lot of work for no reason
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    Quote Originally Posted by FDG View Post
    yeah, and besides, it works terribly well IRL already, so it just sounds like a lot of work for no reason
    Scott Positivist vs The World.

    If something is worthwhile, it's worth turning into science. Socionics is empirical already, it deserves the respect of being made into a genuine science.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashton View Post
    If any of you wanted to be serious about gaining a foothold in scientific credibility for socionics hokum, you could start with a more trivial route of corroborating sociotypes with already well-established psychometrics like the Big Five or MMPI-2.
    I'm not sure what that would prove though. Neither Big Five nor MMPI-2 describe, or attempt to describe, interpersonal relationships. And as far as I know, the studies mainly correlate personality traits with things like job performance, aggressiveness, academic results, psychological disorders - things that most people seem to believe socionics can't be applied to, or at least things socionics doesn't explicitly claim to predict.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ashton View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by labcoat View Post
    i think one could treat socionics scientifically and there is probably value in doing so, but it would be a hell of a lot of hard work and the theory would be completely transformed by the process such that 99% of the claims would end up being reformulated.
    This would be a good thing.
    Redrawing a map to be a better reflection of reality is preferable to relying on a proveably inaccurate chart, no?


    Quote Originally Posted by aestrivex View Post
    in my opinion a study of physiological markers is unlikely to be very practical, and there is no need for that. also in my opinion, the most practical scenario, both from a data collection standpoint and from a suitability standpoint, is evaluating the random assignment of freshman college roommates. in this context evaluating physiological markers would be challenging; it would be much simpler to give people assessments saying things like "my roommate and i find it easy to talk to each other" or whatnot, and also measuring the number of people who end up hating their roommates and having to get roommate changes.

    this issue of creating a standardized and functional assessment that measures the thing we would like it to measure is by far the most challenging aspect of this research. in principle i think any written assessment should be directed towards making sense of quadra values, as a much simpler and more meaningful (in my interpretation, most relations boil down to quadra values anyway) measure to begin with. in the optimal case, measuring quadra values by self-report (and doing a lot of comparative study from people's types we think we know to make sure that our assessment works the way we want it to) will end up corresponding to what we think of new people's types enough so that we can use it without having to figure out a structured interview assessment paradigm that can actually work. that's as far as my personal train of thought has gone on this, which is a complex problem.
    College freshmen are the subjects in like,, 95% of psychological studies, right?

    I'm not sure about the roommates thing since there are thousands of non-socionics reasons not to get along with someone you're randomly assigned to spent waaayyy too much time with, but I agree that proving that quadras exist and affect interpersonal relationships is a good starting point.

    I think this might work:

    1. Design a "quadra determination" survey.
    2. Test on people who know which quadra they're in (e.g. most in this forum) and tweak until you get, say, 97% accuracy.

    Brief 1-1 interactions:
    3. Get group of people to take survey
    4. Get them to spend 5 min with, say, each of 10 different people who have also taken the survey
    5. Get them to rate a variety of factors about their interaction (ease of communication, feeling of mutual understanding, interest in getting to know better, feeling of shared values etc.)
    6. See if there's a statistically significant correlation between highly rated exchanges and quadra
    (This could be especially interesting since there's disagreement about whether duals and conflictor pairings get along well initially... perhaps not so good for proving socionics)

    Long-term relationships
    7. Get pairs of best friends to take the quadra survey
    8. Do statistical stuff, find correlations
    9. Also, since it's accepted that many factors affect who your best friend is, perhaps also stick in a friendship analysis survey and see if you can correlate satisfying, shared-value friendships with shared quadra.
    Quote Originally Posted by Agee The Great View Post
    Nobody here...besides me, seems to know what SLE is except for maybe Maritsa.

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    Static/Dynamic Dichotomy Experiment (not yet tested/work in progress):
    Take blood pressure (record systolic, diastolic, and pulse) of someone 10 times in 10 minutes (This step may be way off*)
    Find mean and standard deviation
    Compare to other people's standard deviations
    ???
    PROFIT

    *: if it is ima try hour intervals or sumthin

    Also can do the same thing with temperature.
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    No single study will provide objective proof of socionics. A strong selction of both formal qualitative and quantitative studies should be able to demonstrate the validity (or lack of ) of socionics.

    Socionics is psychology, and should be measured by psychological standards. Whilst biological psychology will be useful to look at later in it's development, as a theory it needs to be first recognised using other forms of study, i.e we need to demonstrate that there is a consistent pattern in cognition that is consistent with socionic theory, before we even start to consider scanning brains and measuring physiological responses.

    These a few a that I have been considering:

    Study one. Quantitative study for trait clustering.

    The big five is recognised empirically through the identification of trait clusters through factor analysis. If analysis of the results of a standardised test, specific to socionics, demonstrated a statiscally significant clustering, towards traits such as valued/unvalued IM elements, strong/weak functions etc then we would be able to demonstrate the empirical validity of socionics as a theory.

    Study two. Content analysis of interview transcripts with people describing their own personalities and their own relationships.

    This form will avoid interviewees imposing their bias on any interview. coding should be determined for each element or type and a quantitative analysis performed. to ensure validity coding should be done in tandem, with an individual who is either not aware of socionics or not an advocate.

    Study 3. Qualitative study using semi-structured interviews.

    Naturalistic semi-structured interviews, with those who are currently unaware of socioniocs. will need to be aware of leading questions and imposing ideas of socionics on answers. Would be useful in determining the ecological validity of other studies.

    I will think of some more. Once further recognised studies have been undertaken and the validity of the theory is demonstrated (if it is indeed a valid theory) then further studies can be undertaken. However, biological studies are not necessary to objectively validate the theory, as we are looking in patterns and consistency in cognition, not biology.
    Last edited by somavision; 08-11-2011 at 12:42 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashton View Post
    It paves the way for construct validity, among other things. If there's demonstrable correlation patterns between the 16 sociotypes and results on other psychometrics, then that at least gives you something to point at and say, "hey, there really could be something going on here."
    Maybe, but that would require a large population of people of known socionic types having a reliable Big Five assessment done. I do agree that it's a much better approach than the rather whimsical "discoveries"/"breakthroughs" posted on here all the time.

    I'm not sure how it has anything to do with construct validity though. Maybe you mean that it'll provide scientific evidence for the validity of socionics?

    I like the approach, but the Big Five traits seem to correlate more with overall mental health than socionic type, unless you believe that socionic type is correlated with mental health.

    * Openness – (inventive/curious vs. consistent/cautious). Appreciation for art, emotion, adventure, unusual ideas, curiosity, and variety of experience. (vaguely N, but sounds more like Maslow self-actualisation, which is a state theoretically achieveable by any sociotype)

    * Conscientiousness – (efficient/organized vs. easy-going/careless). A tendency to show self-discipline, act dutifully, and aim for achievement; planned rather than spontaneous behaviour. (maybe rational/irrational, but conflated with Se, Ti, enneagram 3...)

    * Extraversion – (outgoing/energetic vs. solitary/reserved). Energy, positive emotions, surgency, and the tendency to seek stimulation in the company of others. (this does sound quite E/I)

    * Agreeableness – (friendly/compassionate vs. cold/unkind). A tendency to be compassionate and cooperative rather than suspicious and antagonistic towards others. (could be F/T, but also sounds like self-actualisation)

    * Neuroticism – (sensitive/nervous vs. secure/confident). A tendency to experience unpleasant emotions easily, such as anger, anxiety, depression, or vulnerability. (F/T conflated with mental health)

    Quote Originally Posted by Ashton View Post
    Whereas all this stuff suggested about "quadra surveys" and what not sounds like utter horseshit to me, since it relies excessively upon the biases/opinions of the survey designers and diagnosticians, to construct and interpret the survey "accurately"—not only that, but nobody even knows what would constitute "accuracy" given the lack of any impartial standard whatsoever to gauge it.
    That's how pretty much all of these personality models are developed, including Big Five - some guys come up with a theory, make up surveys which purport to test the theory, then they do statistical analyses and draw correlations. Statistics presumably is the "impartial standard". It might sound like horseshit to you, but hey, that's how psychologists work - self-reports and massive stats overload. It's why hard scientists look down on psychologists Correlating socionics with Big Five is not going to solve the horseshit problem, since Big Five is also built out of the same horseshit.

    Certainly. Though I suspect that if socionics were ever reorganized into a working falsifiable theory, 95% of its hobbyists would lose interest and drop the subject.
    Oh, definitely. First year university psychology has a massive dropout rate, as fresh high school graduates suddenly realise that their self-indulgent navel-gazing isn't tutorial content.
    Last edited by octo; 08-11-2011 at 03:31 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Agee The Great View Post
    Nobody here...besides me, seems to know what SLE is except for maybe Maritsa.

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    * Openness – (inventive/curious vs. consistent/cautious). Appreciation for art, emotion, adventure, unusual ideas, curiosity, and variety of experience.Socionics equivalent: Intuition (High openness = Intuitive, Low openness = Sensing)

    * Conscientiousness – (efficient/organized vs. easy-going/careless). A tendency to show self-discipline, act dutifully, and aim for achievement; planned rather than spontaneous behaviour. Socionics equivalent: Rationality (High conscientiousness = Rational , Low conscientiousness = Irrational)

    * Extraversion – (outgoing/energetic vs. solitary/reserved). Energy, positive emotions, surgency, and the tendency to seek stimulation in the company of others. Socionics equivalent: Extraversion (High Extraversion = Extraverted, Low Extraversion = Introverted)

    * Agreeableness – (friendly/compassionate vs. cold/unkind). A tendency to be compassionate and cooperative rather than suspicious and antagonistic towards others. Socionics equivalent: Feeling (High agreeableness = Feeling , Low agreeableness = Thinking)

    * Neuroticism – (sensitive/nervous vs. secure/confident). A tendency to experience unpleasant emotions easily, such as anger, anxiety, depression, or vulnerability. Socionics equivalent: None (High Neuroticism = Unhealthy person, Low Neuroticism = Healthy Person)
    BAM: The phenomenon recurs.

    edit: i didn't notice you included your own observations in the quote lol repeat
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    Lol yeah, but it's definitely not a direct correlation e.g. SEIs would probably score quite high on "openness", at least according to the brief description there, whereas an unhappy, bitter ILI would score low.
    Quote Originally Posted by Agee The Great View Post
    Nobody here...besides me, seems to know what SLE is except for maybe Maritsa.

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    Good thing scores don't count then! I'm more interested in the actual type as opposed to what the odd test might hand out.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashton View Post
    Lol, fuck these correlations. They make me ENTp
    Haha. I'm more likely ESTj going by those.

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    I remember Igor Weisband explaining that he and Augusta used to pair people together in a room for a certain amount of time and had them write down how they experienced the relationship.

    You'll probably get much correlation out of that, especially if you devise some standard questionaire for it. There you have it, scientific. If you don't agree, please give a reason.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashton View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Cat King Cole View Post
    The Demonstrative function is just a restatement of how Creative and Base interact.

    e.g. Ne-demonstrative in EIEs is basically just saying "EIE is long-range and more to do with guiding people", in contrast with Se-demonstrative in ESEs saying "ESE is present-oriented and more to do with pushing people".
    So much for SCIENTIFICAL SOCIONICS.

    Seriously though, if you want to make socionics more science-y, you should get your brain in the habit of thinking of socionics in more falsifiable terms.

    And yes, I'm going to continue being annoying about this.
    Okay, my Scientificial Socionics opinion is that everything aside from base and creative is logically superfluous and unmeasurable anyway.

    Any Scientificial Socionics is also not Model A, flawed as it is, and this is not a Scientificial Socionics thread. It is a Model A thread.

    Plus, I like just head-wanking over the internal structure of Model A. It's rather beautiful, scientific or not.

    I'm certainly not opposed to the notion of actually having a sensible discussion about how to make Socionics scientific and actually reform this shambling mummy of a community, but I don't want to derail Morcheeba's thread here.

    Off-topic post moved from Ne Demonstrative thread
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    Quote Originally Posted by octopuslove View Post
    College freshmen are the subjects in like,, 95% of psychological studies, right?
    sure, but the point in this case is that someone else has conveniently done the randomization for us and put people in precisely the situation of close psychological distance that socionics makes a specific prediction about

    I'm not sure about the roommates thing since there are thousands of non-socionics reasons not to get along with someone you're randomly assigned to spent waaayyy too much time with, but I agree that proving that quadras exist and affect interpersonal relationships is a good starting point.
    socionics makes the specific prediction that in situations of close psychological distance, all other factors (psychometrically, random variance which sums to zero) aside, people from the same quadra will get along well, and people from opposing quadras will get along poorly. in a randomized design we would expect the non-socionics reasons to wash out as the sample size becomes sufficiently large, if our prediction about socionics is correct.

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    Good point about the randomness.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cat King Cole View Post
    Essentially I think measuring physiological changes is the easiest way to measure Socionics, and certainly the most scientific, but this somewhat degrades it into common sense--some people are stressful, some people are exciting, some people are relaxing. Socionics does have an advantage in that it hypothesises the characteristics of the people involved in the relationship have some bearing on these measurable, physiological changes in state.
    Yes, I want this to happen as well. Only then will the theory be taken seriously if it is backed up by empirical scientific evidence. Noticing particular aspects of a certain type's behavior and comparing it to theory. The only problem is when you run into people that may behave outside of the typical behavior of their type for whatever reason. In that case you'll have to somehow look at the core of an individual, which is their functions and see how it manifests in their thought process.
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    Quote Originally Posted by MisterNi View Post
    Yes, going the physiological route would take Socionics on a "hard" science route. Meaning, any predictive claims made by Socionics are verified by repeatable physiological reactions to stimuli (Supervision relations should be more stressful over time than duality, for example). Going the hard science route would diminish the value of Socionics and integrating Socionics concepts into the social sciences such as psychology, sociology etc would better preserve the essence of the theory IMO.
    You are wrong. When you get to the subelement level, those who stand to lose the most (say, those who have especially poor relationships to their weak functions) will throw money at it just as we've seen money poured into sham science to discredit global warming evidence.

    You are stressing empirical brain research as a means to psychiatric proof. While that will one day be possible, it will not in the near term. You are looking at research as a means to the wrong end. The end should be to develop treatments for mental illness, not substantiation of an idea that most people can simply be taught once and affirm for themselves.

    And I'd like to make a point: your stance that "non-ego block functions are not scientific" is radical positivism which Osama bin Ladin, quite frankly, would approve of. He above all people wouldn't have wanted people to pay attention to the fact that he devalued Te. Hell, he tried very hard to hide that fact as his tapes show.

    But the real flag should have been when Ashton agreed with you. Because when he does, suspect you need a belief check.

    Gul, do you think money has uses? Do you think it is important? Are material wealth and efficiency things you appreciate?

    But Gul I think you're just the type of guy who doesn't like to ruffle other people's feathers... and believes it should be avoided at any cost. You can be wrong about such things.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashton View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by octopuslove View Post
    I'm not sure what that would prove though. Neither Big Five nor MMPI-2 describe, or attempt to describe, interpersonal relationships. And as far as I know, the studies mainly correlate personality traits with things like job performance, aggressiveness, academic results, psychological disorders - things that most people seem to believe socionics can't be applied to, or at least things socionics doesn't explicitly claim to predict.
    It paves the way for construct validity, among other things. If there's demonstrable correlation patterns between the 16 sociotypes and results on other psychometrics, then that at least gives you something to point at and say, "hey, there really could be something going on here." It's a formative step in the right direction towards connecting socionics with other extant psychological research (though I know people here are allergic to that sort of thing, since it encroaches upon their freedom of imagination to use socionics as a panacea theory explaining all psychological phenomena).
    that's completely ridiculous. rather than finding behaviorally or clinically significant measures that socionics type might relate to, you're advocating finding correlations between socionics and existing psychological theories. ideally, any observations we make about socionics should have some predictive validity -- it is interesting to know if we can predict from socionics type what people will get along well and what people get along poorly, even if we are not very sure about our estimates (and this is an empirical question, which we can operationalize and measure, even if our operationalization is not necessarily perfect). it is interesting to find clinically useful measures, like "IEIs are 50% more likely to suffer from depression" or whatever.

    what is completely not interesting is to relate socionics type to another abstract concept which itself is correlated to behaviorally and clinically significant measures. to say that people high in neuroticism are 50% more likely to suffer from depression or something like this is great and suggests that the big five has some clinical validity (as an aside, the people who work with the big five also make the claim that the five factors span the entire range of personality which is complete total utter bullshit in my opinion -- but this is my opinion, however educated), but to say that IEIs are typically high in neuroticism and consequently are likely to suffer from depression as a result of these correlations is silly, because this inference is the product of a chain of correlated measures and thus the correlation that we infer has high variance.

    finding correlations between socionics and existing "accepted" measures of personality that exist is fine from the standpoint that it can inform us about the nature of personality structure and potentially the way that various aspects of personality (e.g. a socionics-mediated propensity towards maladaptive cognitions, or image orientation, or whatever) affect or cause our personology (e.g. neuroticism). that being said, this comment of ashtons that, in an endeavor to science-ify socionics, we should relate to existing measures of personality as a primary goal truly mystifies me, and that he would say this suggests to me sloppy scientific epistemology (shocking i know) and also that he doesn't have the slightest clue how research is actually conducted in the social sciences.

    Whereas all this stuff suggested about "quadra surveys" and what not sounds like utter horseshit to me, since it relies excessively upon the biases/opinions of the survey designers and diagnosticians, to construct and interpret the survey "accurately"—not only that, but nobody even knows what would constitute "accuracy" given the lack of any impartial standard whatsoever to gauge it.
    i think gulanzon sort of hit the nail on the head in his offhand comment in saying that tests don't work and interviews at least *sort of* do -- he implied that interviews are the right approach anyway. people who think about the social sciences extensively aside and would defend the clinical usefulness of self-report assessments (and undoubtedly ashton as well who enjoys being antagonistic about such matters regardless of whether he has due cause). i think that the natural a priori dismissal of self-report tests as an assessment type is an insight about the field and a signal that he at least understands some of the concepts relevant to what socionics is actually purporting to measure (at least in theory and not with respect to himself, anyway).

    i think this issue that ashton brought up is sort of a valid concern, actually. there is no doubt that in order to have a clinical evaluation of socionics we need some type of standardized measure as opposed to the purely subjective typings of an expert or panel of experts -- yet, as in gulanzon's somewhat unwitting observation, the latter in practice is what "actually works." so how should we design our assessment to be as not subjective as possible? well, the issue here is really in part that there is no agreed upon idea of what IM elements are because precisely there is no objective concept of an IM element. let us be completely clear about what we are measuring -- we are not measuring some objective thing called IM elements that exist in reality; they exist only in our model and hopefully correspond as well as possible to that underlying reality. therefore we should operationalize our test as corresponding as closely to what we think applies in our model, and accept that other people might have slightly different (or, say in ashton's case as compared to mine, completely different) models. to that end, if i were conducting this research my operationalization of the model will be one model and if ashton were conducting research under an analogous design, his assessment measure might be different. it would be more accurate to simply conceptualize these different "subjective" if you will descriptions of IM elements as completely different models themselves, which of course is exactly the way i conceptualize my body of concepts about socionics in contrast to other ones (e.g. ashton's delusional concepts). the point is that this represents no conflict in our research paradigm, only the modular, theoretical assumptions we make about socionics to begin with. and of course, in practice we will operationalize this using a mishmash of theoretical viewpoints and ignore some extra theoretical views in our operationalization due to lack of interest or effort or time, and our research will suffer for lack of thoroughness as a consequence -- but that does not mean this theoretical half-assedness is necessarily clinically meaningless or that it is even abnormal.

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    Model A is the product of qualitative inquiry. Most psychologists consider qualitative inquiry a reliable means of ascertaining knowledge about someone, except where people have incentive to lie.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashton View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by aestrivex View Post
    ideally, any observations we make about socionics should have some predictive validity -- it is interesting to know if we can predict from socionics type what people will get along well and what people get along poorly, even if we are not very sure about our estimates (and this is an empirical question, which we can operationalize and measure, even if our operationalization is not necessarily perfect). it is interesting to find clinically useful measures, like "IEIs are 50% more likely to suffer from depression" or whatever.
    Yes, and you'll find clinically useful measures by actually connecting socionics to existing personality research.
    indeed you will, but with far less predictive power than if you found these clinical measures directly stemming from theoretical notions about socionics.

    It's foundational work that would begin the process of lending epistemic credence to socionics constructs—instead of simply asserting their existence a priori out of thin air. This could then give way to building more robustly testable hypotheses about socionics.

    Corroborating one's research with existing knowledge about same or similarly related phenomena, is an integral part of the scientific process. If you don't understand the necessity of this, I don't know what to tell you.

    It's generally a good idea to start from a foundation based on things you already know with reasonable certitude, then work incrementally from there.

    ...

    Anyway, I think you guys are putting the cart before the horse so to speak, by jumping straightaway to testing for intertypes, without first substantively demonstrating the existence of sociotypes themselves.
    we have a difference of opinion here on the usefulness of theory as a guiding principle. what makes this research paradigm interesting to me is that we have a theoretical notion that predicts an important clinical outcome that is not satisfactorily addressed by any existing model. as i said, understanding the way socionics interfaces with other personality models (for instance, the rather interesting way that enneagram types seem to lead to different "flavors" of the same socionics types, by my lay and anecdotal observations anyway) seems like an interesting question in terms of identifying personality structure.

    it is unclear to me what value would come of "substantively demonstrating the existence of sociotypes themselves" in the exclusion of intertype relations. by far, in my educated opinion, the most interesting and the most falsifiable of hypotheses that socionics is the empirically testable question about whether people do get along better or not in the context of quadra-favorable relations in close psychological distance. it is not clear to me how one would go about showing that socionics types exist in the absence of this hypothesis, or what that would mean, or why that would be an interesting finding that tells us anything useful about personality differences. if, however, we did find a quadra or duality-mediated effect of interpersonal compatibility in close psychological distance, that would provide a somewhat strong statement about our theory, that at least something interesting is going on there. this is an empirical question yet to be tested, but it is a far more robust test of theoretical principles.


    That's a vast oversimplification.
    it would be completely unsurprising for us to disagree on this point on the basis of our different model/theoretical interpretations. it is not more than a slight oversimplification, in my opinion. anyway i would agree that my slight oversimplification is based on lay observations and not empirical outcomes -- it is perfectly fine for lay observations to be incorporated into theoretical paradigms in order to guide research questions.

    While it's normal practice in a field of study to have multiple and sometimes divergent models of the same phenomena, if the research program fails to coalesce into a coherent paradigm, then socionics will continue to be relegated to a status of dismal pseudoscience.
    i am absolutely unconcerned with whether or not socionics is perceived as "dismal pseudoscience" in the eye of academic psychology. i am able to evaluate for myself what constitutes scientific evidence and what does not. if i ran a study and you ran a study with a different assessment method and five other people also ran the study with their own assessment methods, and only the two of our studies, differentally operationalized, found anything, and my study found that same-quadra were optimal, and your study found that opposite-quadra relations were optimal (or whatever, obviously these findings are stupid but its just an example), a layperson reading our work might conclude that socionics is pseudoscience since five of the seven studies found nothing and the other two found irreconcilable conclusion. if this were to happen, in saying that socionics is pseudoscience, this person would be *wrong* -- because there would actually be scientific evidence for its effects under different operationalizations. in time, if this research were continued, because we continue to believe in the theory and the evidence for the theory in spite of opposition, the differences in these model approaches would become apparent.

    yes, there are some practical reasons why i or any researcher should care about popular opinions of socionics, most notably to do with grant money. crossing the bridge of having to sell my ideas and my yet-uncompleted research in search of acquiring grant money is one i will figure out how to cross if i ever come to it.

    I should also add, that the extent to which intertypes are reliably understood, is greatly overestimated. For instance, it's obvious even from cursory observational experience that people of the same quadra don't always necessarily like one another. Not to mention, any sensible research design along these lines, would have to control for a legion of non-socionics factors that regulate interpersonal dynamics—including but not limited to: age, gender, intelligence, culture, upbringing, shared interests, etc.
    in my opinion it is often predictable from quadra dynamics the ways in which people of the same quadra do not always like each other. in my opinion, the phenomenon occurs most commonly in betas, who have conflicting ideologies and exist in conflicting hierarchies, and in gammas, who exercise harsh judgment on one another and don't budge from these judgment. this is also an empirically testable hypothesis, and we would still expect in the end that betas get along better with betas and gammas with gammas, even if there is more turmoil than in alpha-alpha relations. (this can also be a part of our assessment, e.g. gamma-gamma relations might report they overall get along better with one another but not that they fight less with one another than gamma-alpha relations.)

    in principle it would be better to control for age, intelligence, hobbies, etc. beforehand than to try to pull out the variance related to these factors, but in principle we can attempt the latter. not matching for these factors in our experimental design is far more practical (e.g. we can just use college roommates and get a big sample size as opposed to meticulously searching for roommates matched in the potential confounds we are interested in controlling for) and allows for the stronger research conclusion that maybe socionics, with sufficient sample size, transcends some or all of these factors. in my opinion controlling for these factors would be appropriate for some follow up studies, but not for a pilot trying to get a large sample and proving a very broad point about socionics.

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    What? What is this? There's nothing scientific about Socionics. I mean, for one thing my work was never scientific to begin with, and then on top of that, Socionics is basically what you get when you take psychological types and then stomp on them until all the science molecules are smooshed into another dimension. I mean, come on guys! I just needed something to help me psychoanalyze the freaks I got coming into my office and psychological types was the thing! I might be a mother fucking genius, but people are fucking weird! A man comes in talking about a dream about ponies chasing him around his mother's vagina and I have to start somewhere! Why not categorize him with a type? Why not search for the foundation of his thinking? Sensible enough, eh? But really, it's all just observation. I never did any controlled tests... I never put pony man into a room with glass walls and some guys wearing white shirts and masks on their faces. I just observed the fuckers and wrote shit down! Trying to make that scientific is like taking a fucking wrench and telling someone to prove with science that it does something! Who the fuck does that? Just use the fucking wrench! Hell, I'd hit the bastard in his face with the damn thing, and then when a bruise appears? There you go, asshole - it works.

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    Quote Originally Posted by octopuslove View Post
    That's how pretty much all of these personality models are developed, including Big Five - some guys come up with a theory, make up surveys which purport to test the theory, then they do statistical analyses and draw correlations. Statistics presumably is the "impartial standard". It might sound like horseshit to you, but hey, that's how psychologists work
    thank you. most people here don't know shit, or even horseshit about scientific tests.

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    Quote Originally Posted by octopuslove View Post
    That's how pretty much all of these personality models are developed, including Big Five - some guys come up with a theory, make up surveys which purport to test the theory, then they do statistical analyses and draw correlations. Statistics presumably is the "impartial standard". It might sound like horseshit to you, but hey, that's how psychologists work - self-reports and massive stats overload. It's why hard scientists look down on psychologists Correlating socionics with Big Five is not going to solve the horseshit problem, since Big Five is also built out of the same horseshit.
    right; the implicit assumption here is that the operationalization of a theoretical model is implicitly "horseshit" because it is a potentially fallible operationalization and not measuring something "objectively measurable" in the way that you can measure the mass of some chemicals. i think this view is naive and uninformed, and ignores the extremely important fact that behind our somewhat bootstrapped attempts at crafting an appropriate operationalization, there is quite a robust theory there to guide us. it is this theoretical background that forms the basis for the FFM to be externally "valid" (depending on who you talk to, i suppose).

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    Funny that... psychologists tend to look down on statisticians as well!

    Nah not really... in actuality "quantitative" research is distinguished from "qualitative" research. In essence, socionics is qualitative research on Jung's qualitative model.

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