Superhuman Caregivers: New Study Uncovers The Distinct Personality Profile of Nurses

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New study by reveals that nurses possess a unique personality profile that distinguishes them from the rest of the population and that allows them to adapt to an extremely challenging field.

Nurses are often hailed as unsung heroes – and for good reason.

Despite working in one of the most difficult fields, nurses handle challenges with strength and grace.

As if saving lives isn’t enough, nurses also make it a point to commit acts of kindness on a regular basis.

Nurses are often hailed as unsung heroes – and for good reason. They have to deal with illness, death, grieving family members, an often love-hate relationship with doctors, and an inflexible healthcare system that ties their hands and limits their ability to help. But nurses are a resilient bunch, according to a recent study conducted at PsychTests. No matter what challenges they face, these healthcare heroes never stop fighting the good fight.

Collecting data from 784 people who took their Nursing Aptitude Test, PsychTests’ study reveals that nursing is not a career path for the faint at heart:


  •     89% of the nurses in the study are exceptionally good at regulating their emotions in a healthy way (compared to 64% of the general population). Even when they find themselves overwhelmed with emotions, they do not allow their anger, sadness, or anxiety to cloud their judgment.


  •     As unpleasant as it can be, 83% of the nurses are comfortable facing conflict situations head-on (compared to 67% of the general population). Whether dealing with a demanding patient, complaining family members, or abrasive doctors, nurses have a knack for being objective and keeping emotionally intense situations in perspective.
  •     In most disagreements, 89% of nurses would rather compromise with others than be right (compared to 63% of the general population). They don’t get defensive and strive to find the perfect compromise.


  •     94% of the nurses will stick to their principles, even when faced with peer pressure to behave otherwise (compared to 86% of the general population).
  •     88% of the nurses believe that they would make a good role model (compared to 79% of the general population).
  •     83% of the nurses recognize that the greatest resource they can offer to others, particularly those in need, is companionship (compared to 60% of the general population).


  •     89% of the nurses bounce back quickly from disappointment and failure (compared to 55% of the general population).
  •     100% of nurses have the self-motivation to push themselves to complete difficult tasks (compared to 88% of the general population).
  •     No matter how tough their job gets, 89% of the nurses indicate that they still look forward to their day (compared to 68% of the general population).
  •     83% of the nurses indicate that stress or high-pressure situations motivate them to work harder (compared to 73% of the general population).
  •     89% of the nurses are good multi-taskers, and are able to adapt to a dynamic and unpredictable work environment (compared to 66% of the general population).

As if saving lives isn’t enough, nurses also make it a point to commit acts of kindness on a regular basis, including:

  •     Letting people pass ahead of them in line or in traffic (78% for nurses vs. 62% for the general population).
  •     Holding the door or elevator open for someone (94% for nurses vs. 82% for the general population).
  •     Giving a homeless person money or food (44% for nurses vs. 16% for the general population).
  •     Buying dinner for friends or family without expecting anything in return (67% for nurses vs. 34% for the general population).
  •     Sending a message to someone to see how they’re doing or to brighten their day (78% for nurses vs. 63% for the general population).
  •     Spending time with someone who is often neglected, like an elderly family member or family pet (67% for nurses vs. 37% for the general population).

“There’s a reason why the number of nursing students who enter the program tends to dwindle the further they get into the program, with some experts estimating a dropout rate of at least 50%. Without question, it’s a demanding field,” explains Dr. Jerabek, president of PsychTests. “As we’ve discovered in our study, those who do graduate, find a position and stick to it are unique. Nurses are hardworking, comfortable taking on a lot of responsibility, possess the fortitude needed to deal with some rather stomach-churning tasks, and have a knack for building a rapport with others. Most importantly, the ability to stay tough in the face of hardship without losing that softer, caring side is something that nurses do better than anyone else. They are a truly special group of people.”

Want to assess your nursing aptitude? Check out:

Professional users can request a free demo for NAPA - R (Nursing Aptitude and Personality Assessment - Revised) or any other assessments from ARCH Profile’s extensive battery:

To learn more about psychological testing, download this free eBook:

About is a subsidiary of PsychTests AIM Inc. is a site that creates an interactive venue for self-exploration with a healthy dose of fun. The site offers a full range of professional-quality, scientifically validated psychological assessments that empower people to grow and reach their real potential through insightful feedback and detailed, custom-tailored analysis.

PsychTests AIM Inc. originally appeared on the internet scene in 1996. Since its inception, it has become a pre-eminent provider of psychological assessment products and services to human resource personnel, therapists, academics, researchers and a host of other professionals around the world. PsychTests AIM Inc. staff is comprised of a dedicated team of psychologists, test developers, researchers, statisticians, writers, and artificial intelligence experts (see The company’s research division, Plumeus Inc., is supported in part by Research and Development Tax Credit awarded by Industry Canada.

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Ilona Jerabek
PsychTests AIM Inc.
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