Abida Mian's Blog

An outlier that's living, learning and being myself…

BBC/Open University: The Big Personality Test

The Big Personality Test

I enjoy watching programmes with Prof Robert Winston – he comes across as incredibly intelligent and lovely at the sametime – now if only I could find someone like him (but minus the tache) 🙂

Prof Winston asks ‘do our personalities shape our lives, or do our lives shape our personalities’ After watching ‘The Big Personality Test’ on the BBC, I was intrigued to do their online personality test, but the test has had ongoing technical issues until now…


After answering a few pages of questions, these are my results of my five personality traits (scored out of 5):

Openness: (3.6/5)

You scored medium on Openness.

This trait is sometimes known as ‘Openness to experience’. People with scores like yours tend to have a fairly broad range of interests. You may be more sensitive to art than those scoring low on this measure.

You are likely to find it easy to come up with original solutions to problems.

It has been suggested that Openness is related to a person’s likelihood to hold unusual beliefs. People with low-to-medium Openness may therefore be less likely to believe in things like conspiracy theories.

Conscientiousness: (5/5)

You scored high on Conscientiousness.

Conscientiousness describes how dependable, organised and hard-working a person is likely to be. This may be the reason why, of all the personality traits, Conscientiousness is the most consistent indicator of job success. People with scores like yours tend to be extremely dependable and organised. It’s likely that your life is well-planned and you approach things in a thorough manner.

At work, you probably approach tasks methodically and thoroughly, with everything in its right place.

Some studies have shown the more Conscientious an individual is, the more disciplined they are likely to be about exercise and diet.

Extroversion: (2.9/5)

You scored low on Extroversion.

Extroversion is characterised by positive emotions and the tendency to seek out pleasure-stimulating or risk-taking activities. People with scores like your are likely to enjoy their time away from lots of people. Social activities may well leave you feeling drained rather than energised, and your quiet time is probably where you recharge your batteries.

It may be a stereotype, but there is evidence that those scoring low in Extroversion are likely to be more suited to intellectual or studious pursuits.

People with high Extroversion are more likely to lead risky lifestyles and take greater risks in pursuit of rewards. Health studies have shown they are more likely to smoke and less likely to get enough sleep than people who score less highly on this trait.

Agreeableness: (5/5)

You scored high on Agreeableness.

Agreeableness measures how sympathetic and considerate a person is likely to be. People with scores like yours are likely to find it very easy to get along with other people. You probably find that you are sensitive to the feelings of others and that people find it easy to warm to you.

As a ‘people person’ you will probably be very comfortable in situations that require teamwork.

Neuroticism: (1.8/5)

You scored low on Neuroticism.

In the context of the Big Five personality traits, the term ‘Neuroticism’ relates to a person’s response to threatening or stressful situations. People with scores like yours are often seen as being calm and even-tempered. They cope well with stressful situations and may seem tranquil despite adverse circumstances.

Some scientists have suggested that Neuroticism was beneficial in evolutionary terms. Early man may have found it advantageous to live in a population where certain individuals had a high sensitivity to threats to the group’s survival.

There is evidence to suggest that Neuroticism, when combined with high scores in personality traits such as Conscientiousness, can result in a powerful work ethic and a will to succeed.

My Conclusion:

I actually think that my scorings are very accurate – I’m highly conscientious and agreeable: I always work hard (my boss recently admitted that if I didn’t show up for work and left no message, he’d call the police – an indicator of how reliable I am!) and am a bit of a perfectionist (I infact only respect people if they have a similar work-ethic), my dad brought me up that way. The disadvantage is that because you’re an employers dream, it can hold you back as you end up doing other peoples work without any of the rewards. In terms of agreeableness, I am very sensitive and often help people even if that means neglecting my own needs, but through life experience, I’ve become a little guarded as I have been taken advantage of… As for scoring low on extroversion – well that’s certainly no surprise, and whilst I do enjoy the company of my friends (incase they read this!), I’m comfortable spending periods on my own reading or studying…



  Garry Wright wrote @

I really like this post…its very interesting. Its also very nice to hear someone reflecting about their own character and personality. Enjoyable reading because its so thoughtful.

  ben wrote @

hello Abi

I just did the bbc personality test. I tried to answer the questions as best as i could but i found some of the questions a little personal in places. My scores were

Openness 3.7/5 which is encouraging to here but i would agree that i do have a fairly broard range of hobbies/interests; also i am a problem solver or at least try to be!

Conscientiousness 4/5 not sure what to add but i like to finish a job fairly well

Extroversion 3.4/5 Id agree i am generally fairly comfortable meeting new people and will usually enjoy social occasions but i do have my moments where all that can change especially on one of the shy days.

Agreeableness 4.1/5 Yes i do tend to get along with everybody so far, no major arguments or battles.

Neuroticism 2.1/5 I can be fairly laid back the majority of the time, usually if its a panic time i try to get organised and avoid getting stressed or at least try ! But yes id agree i am generally calm and even-tempered.

Thanks for letting me know, interesting.

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