Incompatibility between personality, interest and career choice could have an impact on one's career and also individual well-being. The pressure that existed because of this incompatibility could be manifested through excessive sick leave taken, job truancy, lack of commitment etc.(Carmeli & Gefan, 2004). According to Holland (1998), the match between personality and interest with career choice determines motivation, work satisfaction, achievement, productivity and stability in one's career. The decision to choose "the right person for the right job" must be given due attention in the choice of student candidates (Parson, 1908 in Sidek Mohd Noah, 2005). The psychometric test known as Malaysian Educators Selection Inventory (MEdSI) is the initiative effort of the Council of Deans, Education Faculty of Higher Institution of Learning. This effort is taken to produce competent educators. The first cohort of teacher trainees' intake shortlisted through the MEdSI test was the 2007/2008 first semester. Early observation on the quality of this group of trainees was most encouraging compared to the previous cohort (Abdul Malik et al., 2008; Joharry et al., 2008).
In other countries, the problem of a match between individuals and courses applied is solved through the use of psychometric techniques. For example the Vocational Preference Inventory (VPI), Self-Directed Search (SDS) and Strong-Campbell Interest Inventory (SCII) tests were used extensively for staff recruitment and student admission in the United States of America. These tests used the concept of Person-Environment Fit (P-E Fit) which is a concept of matching between individual characteristics and the environment.
The existing instrument in general is developed in western countries where the cultural background differs from Malaysian culture. This cultural difference led to the development of an instrument based on local values and cultures. Hence, an instrument, Malaysian University Selection Inventory (MUnSYI) was developed based on the concept of Person-Program Fit™(P-P Fit™).
MUnSyI was developed based on important parameters such as career interest, personality, integrity, emotional intelligence and patriotism when selecting student candidates. These parameters were selected based on the soft skills demand in accordance with the National Education Philosophy and the Educational Development Blueprint. This instrument was developed by the Malaysian Examinations Council's consultants which comprise a panel of experts from eleven local public institutions of higher learning.
- Format of MUnSyI
MUnSyI consists of five sections with 310 items. Section A is on Career Interest; Section B on Personality; Section C on Integrity; Section D on Emotional Intelligence and Section E on Patriotism.
- Purpose of MUnSyI
MUnSyI was developed to obtain information on candidate's intrinsic qualities which include Career Interest, Personality, Integrity, Emotional Intelligence and Patriotism as additional information to candidates' details. The information gathered from this test is used to select suitable candidates for enrolment into various programmes offered by Malaysian universities.
The justification for using the MUnSyI instrument are as follows:
- To help the candidates to choose the most appropriate program for themselves
- To help a university to recruit suitable candidates based on the concept of "the right individual for the right program". This instrument is able to differentiate candidates who have the potential to succeed in the field they are in.
- Selection of candidates is not based only on their academic achievements, but takes into consideration vocational interest, personality, integrity values, emotional intelligence and patriotism in line with the National Education Philosophy.
- To help reduce internal problems at the university as a result of the wrong choice of such as change of program, low achievement, drop out rate and emotional instability.
- One of the criteria of university ranking is based on the total number of students who obtain their degree in the duration given and are able to get jobs after 6 months after graduation. The corelation between students and the field of study by using the MUnSyI instrument has helped to realise the university's aspiration to obtain a good ranking.
- The MUnSyI instrument is in line with the National Education Evaluation System which is in its execution stage by the Ministry of Education.