Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Education


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Shirley Van Hoeven

Second Advisor

Dr. David Cowden

Third Advisor

Dr. Uldis Smidchens


This survey research study explored differences in personality types between staff nurses and nurse managers in acute care institutions (hospitals). The study tested a theory about expected differences which was based on an extensive literature review of nursing administration and type theory as developed by Jung and measured by the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI).

Eight acute care institutions were selected randomly from hospitals listed by the American Hospital Association (1983) as having 400-600 beds and located in the state of Michigan but outside of Wayne County. Of the eight hospitals approached, permission to conduct the study was obtained in five. The sample for the study consisted of all female middle nurse managers, all female first-line nurse managers, and two randomly selected full-time female staff nurses from each clinical area in the institutions. The three groups comprised the levels of nurse management, the independent variable. The final sample consisted of 36 middle nurse managers, 97 first-line nurse managers, and 210 staff nurses.

Data on the dependent variable, the types of the individuals, were obtained using the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator. A second research instrument, the Personal Data Survey, was used to collect demographic information important in the interpretation of the research findings.

Analysis of the data collected resulted in the following conclusions: (1) Parts of the theory developed from the literature review were supported. (2) Staff nurses had a majority of sensing, feeling, and judging types, consistent with the expected tasks of the direct care giver. (3) More intuitive types, intuitive plus thinking types, and less sensing plus feeling types were in the composite group of nurse managers than the staff nurse group. (4) Middle nurse managers had more intuitives and perceptives but fewer sensing plus feeling types than first-line nurse managers.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access

Included in

Nursing Commons