Take the 2-minute tour ×
Cognitive Sciences Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for practitioners, researchers, and students in cognitive science, psychology, neuroscience, and psychiatry. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I have come across a theory relating to Jung Function Theory normally addressed as 'Dom-Tert' loops. I will briefly explain:

In Jung Function Theory, everyone has 4 of 16 functions. They split into Introverted/Extroverted, Sensing/Intuiting, and Thinking/Feeling. These, in broad strokes, aim to explain how people function in both Information Gathering (S/N) as well as Information Processing (T/F) and whether that has a subjective base, or an objective base (I/E).

This theory lays out that the first (or dominant) function and the third (or tertiary) function form a feedback loop, and the second function becomes underdeveloped. Below is an excerpt that hopefully gives an example of this at work (Myers Briggs notation is used as shorthand here):

ENTP/ESFJ: Ne/Fe or Fe/Ne--Narcissistic Personality Disorder. This type often behaves impulsively and manipulatively, needing constant approval and admiration from others, running around investing in new thing after new thing, but never developing the self-confidence of a strong, subjective perspective. Fe used negatively may use its awareness of the cultural standards of others to intentionally offend or upset them, in order to service Ne's curiosity about the patterns in their responses. If Ti/Si were working properly, it would give the user a balancing sense of personal, subjective importance and free him of his dependence upon the adulation and unconditional acceptance of others. (Horrible example: Patrick Bateman from American Psycho.)

The crux being that everyone must use a balance of subjective and objective reasoning and perception to function correctly.

Now I realise that Jung Function theory is a favourite with armchair psychologists, and it's validity has been questioned, but I wanted to know if this theory is either a) expressed formally in any kind of Jung Function theory study, or b) if something like this imbalance leading to personality disorders exists in other psychological theories?

Where does this idea come from? The writer of the above forum post doesn't seem to take credit for the idea or even lead us to what inspired them.

share|improve this question
Some theories of personality disorders describe them in terms of extremely high or low scores on the Big Five traits. Would something like that interest you at all as an answer to your b)? I'm afraid I wouldn't be able to answer a) as well, but I hope someone else can. Nice question BTW, and welcome to cogsci.SE! –  Nick Stauner Feb 17 '14 at 5:27
@NickStauner That would be a good part to an answer, but I'm not sure if I could accept it without something on JFT/MBTI...Is it something one of the other proponents of Jungs Theories developed? –  Pureferret Feb 17 '14 at 8:10
I certainly wouldn't expect you to accept it :) The theories I'm referring to have relatively little to do with Jung. I think Jung was one of the first to propose the introversion-extroversion construct, but the Big Five are otherwise very different from the MBTI constructs. –  Nick Stauner Feb 17 '14 at 17:28

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.