Color Tests are Ineffective, Psychologists Say

Omorose Emwanta, EDITOR: Saffiatu Johnson

If you have taken a Journalism class at Charles Herbert Flowers, you have probably taken a Color Test. These 10-minute tests boil our personalities into a couple words, and can even be used to dictate social interactions. In order for a system or measurement to become socially accepted, majority of citizens must prescribe value to it. The value in color quizzes such as Don Lowry’s personality assessment and Carl Jung’s aptitude test is scientific validity.- people see that smart people and reputable sources cosign these tests, so they assume the tests are valid.

Emma Goldberg’s NYT article breaks down why these psychometric tests aren’t scientifically sound. She states, “There is a concerning lack of evidence for this test’s accuracy…they create an illusion of expertise about psychology.” Angus Chen from the Scientific American pushes this claim further. His 2018 essay for the Scientific American insists that color quizzes are unreliable because “a person’s type changes from day to day”. The consensus among licensed psychologists is that these tests are “shockingly bad”. If there is no scientific basis for color quizzes, then why should we value them?

The short answer is: we shouldn’t. The purpose of journalism is to seek the truth and report it, so why do we spend so many lessons on inaccurate tests?