The Human Side of Science

Are there some personalities that are better suited than others to a scientific career? To provide insight into this issue, The Science Advisory Board created the first-ever psychological profile of life science researchers, the Scientific Personality Assessment (SPA).

The SPA is meant to help scientists better evaluate their strengths and assets as well as confront the particular challenges they face in their everyday work life. The goal is not to suggest that one personality type is better than another or that having specific character traits will engender more professional success, but rather to encourage people to align their professional aspirations with their own particular blend of expertise and skills.

A summary of these results present in a report entitled, The Human Side of Science: “What is the Archetypal Researcher Personality?,” can be accessed at? ?

If you would like to take the Scientific Personality Assessment (SPA), please contact Lena Zappia at? ? [email protected]? ? for a unique URL that will you directly into the survey. Upon completion of the survey, you will be given immediate feedback as to what type of scientific or medical persona best matches your preferences.

In a festive, holiday spirit, you can use this test to help prioritize your 2005 research goals or “scientific” New Year’s resolutions.

Alternatively, and in a more serious vein, it can actually be use as an assessment tool for graduate education committees of universities and professional societies by providing insight on how best to develop courses and materials to meet the specific needs of students.

Tamara Zemlo, Ph.D., M.P.H.
Director, Scientific & Medical Communications
The Science Advisory Board
2111 Wilson Boulevard
Suite 250
Arlington, VA 22201
TEL: (866) 348-3554 x 29
[email protected]

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