I'm aware of the MMPI. It's weakness, IMO, is that everyone is compared to a Minnesota farmboy.
DrewDad, the MMPI was re-standardized on a sample group more representative of the general population of the U.S. So the MMPI-2 would not have the objections you mentioned.
The MMPI-2 was standardized on a group of hundreds of people, which includes percentages of major ethnic/minority groups based upon the census breakdowns of those groups at the time (about ten years ago now).
The fact remains, that the MMPI-2 is much more widely used by clinical psychologists, the people who actually try to understand and measure personality factors, than is the Myers-Briggs test.
Sure. Personality is damned hard to measure.
It's not just difficult to measure, it's difficult to define. In psychology, if one can't operationally define something, it becomes difficult to measure objectively.
"Personality" is a hypothetical construct. Each of the various personality theories would be based on different hypothetical constructs.
One can test or evaluate hypothetical constructs by drawing inferences--i.e personality is comprised of factors, traits, dimensions, etc. A scale or testing instrument can be devised to attempt to measure those factors or traits. These things are not easily measurable for many reasons. To begin with, it is necessary to identify and define the most salient personality factors and traits. This can be quite controversial. For another thing, these personality factors or traits may be dynamic rather than static--they may change over time. This affects the stability of what is being measured, and, without stability, basic test reliability becomes problematic. And, for still another thing, test construction itself is a complex process which must take into account many variables.
No matter how you look at it, the measurement of these personality traits or factors or dimensions, is not an easy process. It cannot be done by relatively simple "experiments". Experiments, in psychology, are done to evaluate the influence of one variable on another, as scientific research, and are essentially unrelated to psychometric testing which is simply a form of measurement.
There is a big difference in the way a clinical psychologist might use a personality test and the way a lay person might use such a test (if the test is even available to the general public). Psychologists are not generally concerned with predicting behavior, a notion which does have an aura of crystal ball gazing. The emphasis in psychology is on understanding and measuring behavior. How psychometric test results are actually applied can be very misused, which is one reason that most of the widely regarded psychometric tests are only available to qualified professionals, and should only be interpreted by qualified professionals. Test results can be misinterpreted and misused by those without proper training.
The misuse of tests by lay persons may occur when test instruments, such as the Myers-Briggs, with low reliability and validity, are used by human resources personnel as part of a hiring process. These tests, and the inferences drawn from the results, may be quite unfair to job applicants. But apparently, the test remains used in such contexts despite such drawbacks.