eHarmony Compatibility Test

As an Harmony member the first thing you’re asked to do is take the infamous or famous (depending on how much you like tests!) eHarmony Compatibility Test. As you can read in our main review, eHarmony is free to join – just fill out a few blanks on the registration page. You’ll then have access to the Compatibility Test – also free.

e harmony compatibility testeHarmony was one of the first online dating services to have a personality or “compatibility” test, and it still leads the field for depth and detail. And unlike many other tests, the eHarmony test is not an optional extra and it’s certainly not an entertainment feature.

The eHarmony Compatibility Test is at the heart of the eHarmony matchmaking service. Your responses will result in a complete, in-depth Personality Profile which will be used to determine your compatibility with other eHarmony members.

Another benefit of the test is that it will flag people who are not really suited to or genuinely interested in a serious relationship or marriage. An estimated one-in-five are sent a polite email saying much the same thing – that eHarmony is not the right service for them.

Bear in mind that screening people is not the main purpose of the test. It’s a useful by-product of the test that helps eHarmony ensure members are all on the same page – genuinely interested in and likely to benefit from what eHarmony has to offer.

Taking the eHarmony Compatibility Test

The first thing to say about the test is that if you love quizzes, and personality tests in particular, you’re in for a treat.

For one thing, the Compatibility Test is completely free. Just fill in a few blanks at the eHarmony registration page to get started.

For another, this is a mega personality test. To describe it as “in depth” is an understatement. It’s received lots of coverage over the years so there’s a good chance you already know that it assesses “29 dimensions of your life and personality”.  It does this by asking 250 questions. If you think that’s a lot it used be 436 – the personality test has since been refined. So, when it’s said that the free Personality Test has a $40 value, you can believe it.

Although the Compatibility Test is free it will cost you some time – an estimated hour. In my case, it took considerably longer than this.

The questions are easy to answer in the sense that you essentially grade your responses, with your chosen number reflecting different things depending on the actual question. But many of the questions are ones you might never have been asked before, and can be surprisingly difficult to answer.

Once you’ve taken the test your Personality Profile will be sent to you by email – several pages long. You can also view it in your members areas when you log-in using your password. Only about five of your answers will be visible to your matches, and only a few of your responses can be changed.

Compatibility Test Questions

As I mentioned above, many of the questions are difficult to answer, leaving you thinking “Hmm, never been asked that before.”  But where do the questions come from?

The Compatibility or Personality Test questions are based on several “landmark” academic studies which (put very simply) identified key personality traits and dynamics at work in a marriage and, in particular, which combinations make a relationship successful rather than otherwise.

By studying the studies, 29 key areas affecting compatibility were identified – the 29 dimensions asked about in the Compatibility test.

Or as eHarmony puts it:

“The dimensions of compatibility are key personality characteristics that can be used to predict compatibility and potential for long-term relationship success. These dimensions were identified through observing married couples and determining which characteristics between spouses were consistently associated with the most successful relationships.”

eHarmony has divided the 29 dimensions up into two groups – Core Traits and Vital Attributes – and questions in the test are divided up this way too.

Core traits questions explore the aspects (or “dimensions”) of your personality and behaviour that are more or less fixed. For instance the “Kindness” dimension and “Autonomy” dimension questions explore your levels of sympathy and sensitivity, and how much “togetherness” (as it were) you need or want in a relationship.

Examples of Vital Traits are the “Communication” and “Conflict” dimensions. Questions on these explore how “open” you are, how easily you can express yourself, connect with other people, your responses to conflict, and so on.

As well as revealing who you are, the personality test indicates the kind of person your ideal match would be. For instance, let’s take me. I’ll admit that I’m prone to some wildly-emotional moments – short lived but rather intense while they last! Naturally, someone who’s particularly sensitive to the least sign of trouble is not going to be a good match for me, nor me for them!

Do Personality Tests Like These Have Real Value?

Like some other aspects of eHarmony, the Compatibility Test has come in for more than it’s fair share of criticism. For the most part criticism has centered on the question of whether or not any personality test can be a realistic and reliable basis for matching people. Secondly, there’s been some criticism of eHarmony labeling its test as “scientific.”

On the first count, some kind of test is better than none. The alternative is a shot in the dark with (as many of us have found out) an inevitably high failure rate. In addition, eHarmony’s personality test is not just any test. With 250 questions there’s a high chance that something (or many things) will be identified that’s important – that have the potential to make or break or a relationship.

On the “scientific” front, unlike many personality tests, eHarmony’s Compatibility Test is based on scientific studies. Of course the science may not be 100% perfect but again, it’s better than a test based on nothing at all.

As a final word on this, my own Personality profile was spot on, including things that surprised me but were (I had to admit) correct.

Tips for Taking the Test

To access the Compatibility Test simply visit the free registration page and fill in a few basic details. You’ll then be able to take the test.

  • Take your time answering all the questions – as I mentioned, several may have you stumped. If a question is difficult give it time rather than “any answer.”
  • Answer as honestly as you can – the purpose of eHarmony is to be matched with someone who thinks the real you is a perfect you. I rather enjoyed the opportunity to be brutally honest, even when my answers weren’t exactly a compliment to myself, to see what the end result – my personality profile – would be like.
  • Don’t be concerned that you will be screened out (as some are) as not suitable for eHarmony. If you really are interested in a serious relationship, this isn’t going to happen.

Then, submit and check your email or personal eHarmony member’s area to view your in-depth Personality Profile.

Remember, even though you’ve taken the Compatibility Test, you won’t be live on the system until you’ve also completed your eHarmony Profile.

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