Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Larry Ebbers


The purpose of this research was to investigate the relationship between persistence and student differences. The overall objective was to enhance the person-environment congruence of freshmen by understanding differences between students by using psychological type and personal interviews. Psychological type was defined by using the Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI);The sample consisted of 248 entering freshmen at Wartburg College in 1988. Of the entering freshmen, 116 were males and 133 were females;Four hypotheses were tested using correlation, discriminant analysis, multiple regression, and Chi-square analysis to determine the relationships between personality preference, MBTI type, persistence, career decisiveness, and undecided students;In addition, a descriptive study of the interview responses was presented which catagorized the strengths, weaknesses, activity involvement, career decisiveness, self-perception, and majors of the 248 entering freshmen, by type;In summary, there was only one significant relationship between personality preference and persistence, and none between preference and career decisiveness. None of the four preferences were good predictors of persistence or career decisiveness. There was a significant relationship between the number of undecided students and the MBTI type ENFP. In addition, the types ISFJ and ENFP proved to have a significant relationship with persistence. The descriptive study presented valuable information about differences among entering freshman. After examining the student responses by type, the reader will have developed a profile of the entering class.



Digital Repository @ Iowa State University,

Copyright Owner

David George Baumgartner



Proquest ID


File Format


File Size

108 pages