ERIC Number: ED223164
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Who Goes to a Service Academy?
Hughes, Richard L.
Personality characteristics among females admitted to the U.S. Air Force Academy were compared to those of male cadets and to females attending other colleges. The Personality Research Form-E (Jackson, 1974) was administered to all 217 females of an entering class at the Academy during the first few days of basic cadet training. Approximately one-half of the entering male cadets (520) also completed the instrument. It was found that the female cadets were achievement-oriented, assertive, outgoing, adventurous, persistent, expressive, systematic, serious-minded, practical, and socially proper. They also preferred structure to ambiguity. Female cadets were similar in personality to male cadets. However, while similar on most personality dimensions, the global effect was that Academy-entering females were relatively nontraditional and entering males were relatively traditional. Relative to civilian female college students, entering female cadets scored significantly higher on scales measuring need for achievement, affiliation, cognitive structure, dominance, endurance, exhibition, and order. Female cadets scored lower relative to civilian college females on harm-avoidance, play, and sentience. It is suggested that the Academy attracts achievers and relatively dominant or assertive individuals. Academy training emphasizes teamwork and involves physically exciting and sometimes frightening activities. It is proposed that individuals who elect the Academy are pragmatic and serious-minded. Enjoying a structured environment and being systematic by nature, cadets attend an institution high in consistency, rules, orderliness, and "planfulness." (SW)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Air Force Academy CO
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Psychological Association (Washington, DC, August 23-27, 1982).