Common questions about DiSC profiles

Common questions about DiSC profiles

Can your DiSC profile change over time?

DiSC priorities

In general, the average person’s profile tends to stay fairly consistent over time. While small differences in results from one time to the next may occur, major shifts in style are unlikely.

How often should you take a DiSC assessment?

If it has been two years or more since someone last took the profile, we recommend taking it again to ensure the most accurate and up-to-date information.

From The Everything DiSC Manual:

“Stability refers to the assessment’s ability to yield the same measurements over a period of time. … A sample of 599 respondents took the DiSC assessment twice with a two-week interval between testings. … [D]ata suggests that the DiSC scales are stable over repeated administration. Consequently, test takers and test administrators should, on average, expect no more than small changes when the instrument is taken at different times. As the period between administrations increases, however; the divergent results of these administrations will become more and more noticeable.”

Do specific professions, cultures, or nationalities trend towards one dimension or another?

You may have noticed that you see more of one dimension over another when you do trainings with different types of groups. This does occur, but the distribution of successful people in each dimension is still pretty evenly distributed.

For example, people in sales tend to show up in the i quadrant, but they are also found in the other three. For more information see pages 82-84 of the Everything DiSC Manual.

Regarding geography and culture, Mark Scullard, a DiSC researcher, had this to say recently in a LinkedIn forum:

We don’t see much difference in DiSC results based on region of the US. In fact, I had just done a comparison using some representative states (CA, DC, FL, IA, NY, OH, TX, CO, GA) and found very few differences. There was a very slight tendency for results like more S styles in Ohio or more D styles in Georgia, but these differences are so small that they have virtually no practical implications.

With regard to ethnic difference, we can also say that we don’t see any differences based on the traditionally defined five U.S. categories. In fact, when we look at a large sample of Australians (living in Australia) who have taken the U.S. profile, they look the same as the US population. I would only expect to see a difference in your sample with a large Latin-American population if participants are not very fluent in English. In such a case, the distribution of scores shouldn’t change, but the precision will drop a little.

The Everything DiSC blog (published by the assessment’s publisher) noted the following in their “How many D’s are there in the population?” post:

A person is only D relative to the people around her. A person is only C relative to the people around her. For example, imagine that we a have a plane full of S-style folks and the plane crashes on a remote island. We, of course, would have an island full of very, very polite people. But imagine that isolated community of people 10 years later, once they got to know each other really well. Some of those people would now probably be considered D’s – because they are more dominant relative to everyone else. If DiSC is going to be useful, it must help us understand our individual differences, not what everyone has in common.

cornerstone principals of Everything DiSC Workplace

Doesn’t DiSC pigeon-hole people?

You might have heard someone dismiss someone’s action or comments with a remark like “She’s a D, what do you expect?” Assigning labels and rationalizing poor behavior is not what DiSC profiles are about. For one thing, not all Ds behave or respond in the same way. There is diversity in each dimension as you can see if you compare where someone’s dot falls in the D quadrant.

DiSC was designed as a way of helping people better understand another person’s preferences and priorities. It’s a tool to help each of us adapt our preferred, natural behavioral style to meet the needs of another, in a healthy manner.

Which DiSC profile is best?

Choose the profile that best meets your needs. Choose from profiles focused on general workplace issues, management, leadership, sales, emotional intelligence, or conflict. If you want to learn more about yourself, we recommend Everything DiSC Workplace. You can be sure each assessment has gone through rigorous evaluation for validity, reliability, and ease-of-use.

Learn more at Which DiSC profile is best?

What’s the most common or rarest DiSC style?

There are no style “outliers” in the DiSC model refined by psychometricians at Wiley. Everything DiSC assessments are normed so roughly a quarter of the population falls into each quadrant.

DiSC styles distribution

Other assessments based on the DISC model might show a predominance of one style because their assessments haven’t been normed for equal distribution or because their questionnaire items are value-laden.

From The Everything DiSC Manual describing the Everything DiSC technical development:

Three hundred and fifty-one new items were written to most precisely measure the DiSC model at eight points around the circle, starting at the very top and then in 45-degree increments. New items were written as statements (e.g., “I tend to see the best in people”) instead of as adjectives (e.g., “trusting”) as this allowed for the creation of a broader array of items. This flexibility was necessary to ensure that each location on the DiSC map could be precisely measured using items that were not too socially desirable or undesirable. … Items that might be considered intrusive or offensive were excluded from the item pool.

Is it uncommon to have an extra DiSC priority?

The Everything DiSC profiles show a dot for your style and shading to show your comfort zone. Everything DiSC with extra prioritiesIf a person scores high for priorities outside the three surrounding his or her style, shaded lines will be shown. In the example to the right, this person has five priorities rather than the more typical three. Approximately one-third of respondents will receive an extra priority or two in their report.

Do the four DiSC colors mean anything?

The colors themselves are not representative or relevant to the actual styles in any way. They are design and branding choices that differentiate Everything DiSC from other assessments.

Is certification needed to use DiSC?

Certification is not required to administer or interpret the Everything DiSC assessments. However, we do recommend the facilitation kits and certification for those who are interested in providing training.

What are the benefits of using DiSC assessments?

Everything DiSC can help inspire your people and transform your workplace with the tools of constructive change by providing:

  • actionable insights
  • a common language
  • an intuitive and memorable structure
  • reliable and validated results
  • a coaching and team-building tool
  • an entry point for building better relationships
  • an instrumental component of an organizational development strategy

DiSC® is a personal assessment tool used by more than one million people every year to help improve teamwork, communication, and productivity in the workplace.

by Kristeen Bullwinkle and the team


Read more: Understanding DiSC profiles


  1. Betty Black 11 years ago

    I hear people say “I’m a High I” or “She’s a High D”. Isn’t it possible to be a low I or D? On my test I scored what is called the classic Creative Pattern, which has High scores in the D and C dimensions and Low scores in the I and S dimensions…how come I’m not referred to as a Low S?

    Thank you for your time,

    • Author
      discpros 11 years ago


      Yes you could be a low I or S. However, the classical pattern focuses on which of the D i S or C you have in segments 5-7. So if you have a D and C in these segments you are considered high D and C, or a creative pattern. You are considered low if you are in segment 1-3. Therefore, it would be possible to be a High C (in segment 5) and have your i in segment 4, which would not be considered low.

      I hope this helps.

  2. Garfian 8 years ago

    Can your DiSC profile changed?
    there’s 4 behavioral tools for applying the personality system :

    To answer the question above, i think we can use the Modify form behavioral tools, is it right?

    Can you explain more about how we modified the DISC profile? thx

    • Author
      The team 8 years ago

      I’m not sure if I understand your question about modifying your profile. Your profile can change as you mature or as you respond to different environments, but it won’t change drastically. Everyone is a blend of all eight styles, moving outside their own preferences to meet the needs of the situation. For example, Everything DiSC Sales teaches how to match the style of your customer to be more effective.

  3. Greg Leif 8 years ago

    We have two employees whose DiSC styles have changed dramatically over a short period of time. One employee’s style has changed from SC to D in an 18 month period. The other employee’s style has changed from S to Di in a two month period. Both employees have remained in the same jobs over the stated periods and have not experienced any apparent significant life or career events. How would you interpret these changes?

    • Author
      The team 7 years ago

      Were they taking the same Everything DiSC profile each time; e.g. Workplace in January, then Workplace again the next year? It’s very unusual for such a change to occur.
      I suggest looking closely at the Everthing DiSC Supplement for Facilitators for each person. You might spot that the SC had unexpected items that fall in the D quadrant.
      I would also look at the company culture. Has it become more accepting or demanding of a D style? Sometimes people will answer as they think the person giving them the assessment wants. The S style tends to be thought of as being more traditionally appropriate for women, for example, and the D being too aggressive for a woman. I think a lot of us would like to be seen as a Di because there are rewards for that style of behavior in our culture.
      You’re know much more about these two employees. How do others see them? Have they observed a change in behavior?

  4. Dawn 7 years ago

    I recently retook the profile (twice) and found my profile has totally shifted since I took it last 16 years ago. While I was in sales leadership, I scored I, S with nearly no D and absolutely no C. After adopting a special needs child and quitting the paid workforce, I’ve shifted to a DC, with smelly inklings of and S. I’ve felt my fun vivacious self has given way to an advocate, I kiss my old self. Any comments why the shift? Or was it an evolution?

    • Author
      The team 7 years ago

      Sounds like significant changes in your life have changed how you need to behave in the world or how you see yourself. Your difference might also be partly caused by how today’s adaptive testing used in Everything DiSC assessments makes them more accurate than the old DiSC Classic or even PPS 2800 you would have taken in the 1990s.

  5. pedro mello 7 years ago

    Is there any research of US population using DISC assessment tests? Is it a high S/C population?

    • Author
      The team 7 years ago

      Everything DiSC was developed and normed on a representative sample of U.S. adults. Analyses were conducted to see if the distribution of styles differed across various demographic categories. Based on the norming of the DiSC assessment, the expected distribution is 8.3% for each of the twelve styles.

  6. Fabio 6 years ago

    I have done several disc assessments today and got conflicting results. I think I was a little bit skeptic about the first result and then tried to repeat it using different tools. Sometimes I would get a dominant D with high I and very low C, other times I would get a dominant I and high D with low C, one time I got a dominant C. Maybe I read too much information about it and now I just can’t give sincere responses to the questions and just mix up what I am with what I’d like to be and the things I have to do daily even if it is not natural to me. Anyway, it makes me sad and frustrated because it feels like I broke it and can’t use it anymore.

    • Author
      The team 6 years ago

      We’re sorry to hear that. If you took another assessment using the DISC model, but not the Everything DiSC assessment, I’d encourage you to try Everything DiSC Workplace. The computerized adaptive testing provides more accurate results than available in DiSC Classic or one of the many poorly designed DISC tools out there. Also, getting to see an Everything DiSC Supplement for Facilitators will give you the ability to see if you have some answers that simply fall outside what is expected for a typical style. And remember, you can have more than one DiSC priority. The circle model shows this much better than does a chart.

  7. Pricilia 6 years ago

    Hi, is it possible to get same percentage on D,I,S, and C? I have done the test twice before and got totally same on every letter on both test. The last test I took was last year. I redo the test last week, and I got almost same on all, just my D a bit higher while the others were. I took the test again today to make sure, I got almost same on every letter, but now my C a bit high. Is it weird?

    • Author
      The team 6 years ago

      It sounds as though you may be using a variety of DISC assessments. Is that the case? Each DISC assessment is developed differently. A few, but not all, are heavily researched and validated as the Wiley DiSC that we offer is. While you may be strongly inclined toward a style on one assessment, another assessment may use different criteria, terms, values, etc which may give you a different result.
      I hope that helps you understand a difference in recently taken tests. There are a variety of other things that may be happening, but this sounds likely.

    • Mariel Kristine 3 years ago

      How many percent of difference is acceptable to differentiate one style from the other? Ex. If my D is just 3% higher than I will that say that I am a D? Or 3 % is not enough? So i am a DI instead?

      • Author
        The team 3 years ago

        Sounds like you didn’t take an Everything DiSC assessment because it would tell you if you were a D or a Di. You might want to ask the person who gave you the assessment what she or he thinks. Sounds to me like you’re a Di, but if your score isn’t from Everything DiSC I’m not sure it’s even valid. There are a lot of DISC tests out there using the DISC model, but not the Everything DiSC research.

  8. Stephanie 6 years ago

    I took the DISC assessment & did not score a 5 or higher in any category. I scored an equal “4” in both D & C, with my I & S being around -1. What would this indicate if none of the categories are above a 5?

    Thank you!

    • Author
      The team 6 years ago

      We can’t tell you anything about what it means if you took a DISC assessment that wasn’t either from the Everything DiSC® family or DiSC® Classic. Not all assessments based on the DISC model are the same. It sounds like you could get much better information about your style by taking Everything DiSC Workplace®. It places your style within a circle rather than giving you numbers that are hard to interpret. With Everything DiSC you would receive a personalized narrative that explains your style in detail.

  9. Jo 6 years ago

    DiSC profiling suitable for youths with diagnosed special needs condition (ADHD, Autism)?

    Are there DiSC profiling tools specifically designed for them?

    • Author
      The team 6 years ago

      Everything DiSC doesn’t have a profile designed for youths or anyone with special needs, however we can share some information that might help you make a decision. These quotes are from The Everything DiSC Manual.

      “The Everything DiSC assessment has been developed and validated on adults 18 years or older and is appropriate for this population. It is a nonclinical assessment, designed to support personal development and professional relationship in a work setting.”

      Reading skill level:
      There is no time limit for completing the questionnaire, “making it possible for people requiring more time to complete the assessment without need of any special adaption or modification.”

      Flesch Reading Ease score: 74.2
      Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level: 4.7

      Debriefing the results might require extra care. Youth (and others) can sometimes worry that how they answered wasn’t how a popular kid would answer or they worry about being pigeon-holed with a style label. Of course, individuals behaviors encompass all four quadrants of the circumplex graph and that should be emphasized.

      We do still sell the I-Sight profiles that present DiSC in a positive, non-judgmental format for youth. The product has been discontinued, but you can contact [email protected] about ordering some of our remaining copies.

      You might want to post to the Everything DiSC User Group on LinkedIn and ask if anyone has used Everything DiSC with a similar population.

      • Jo 6 years ago

        Thank you so much for the advise! This is very helpful!
        Much appreciated 🙂

      • Sandy 5 years ago

        What does it mean if my Adaptive is higher in I than my Natural? I is Natural 81 and Adaptive 91

  10. Jo 6 years ago

    Is DiSC profiling suitable for youths with diagnosed special needs condition (ADHD, Autism)?
    How would you advise for me to administer the profiling?

    Are there DiSC profiling tools specifically designed for them?

  11. Leif Wirtanen 5 years ago

    Should you place employees with the same DISC score together? Example: If you have a crew of 3 construction workers would it be better to sort out the ones with same scores?

  12. Daddy 5 years ago

    Is it possible to have separate questions on each of the disc elements?. . .

    • Author
      The team 5 years ago

      I’m sorry, but I don’t understand what you’re asking.

  13. KB 5 years ago

    Hi, I did the classic 2.0 DiSC Personality test and my result was a Practioner, high C personality. I am just wondering what Personality style would I be most divergent from?

  14. KB 5 years ago

    Correction, I scored high iC demensions. What would be the most divergent to that?

    • Author
      The team 5 years ago

      Look at the circumplex model for DiSC and you’ll see that across from the C is the i. You might be a C style with an extra priority of enthusiasm. The iC style is from the older graph model and that assessment did not use adaptive testing. You’ll get a more accurate profile if you take Everything DiSC Workplace. You might be interested in the article What happened to my style: iC or DS?

  15. Z 5 years ago

    I’ve did a DISC assessment and I scored 10for D,S , 11for I, and 9for C . The total marks is 40 for the test . Is this normal ? I almost have the same marks for every dimensions

    • Author
      The team 5 years ago

      I would suggest taking an Everything DiSC assessment since it is 32% more accurate than DiSC Classic. Of course, you could still have a similar even score. It happens. It can mean that the person is very adaptable. It can mean that the person wasn’t sure about the meaning of several words or felt that they had strong negative connotations. Asking others to “people read” you and describe what they have observed your style to be can sometimes be really interesting and helpful.

  16. Ben 5 years ago

    Are there any statistics on the distribution of the four profiles? To me it seems there are way more S-personalities than D-personalities but this might be due to some kind of bias.

    • Author
      The team 5 years ago

      Everything DiSC is normed so there is an even distribution of styles. D = 24.8, i = 25.1, S = 25.7, C = 24.4. There are other tests out there that use the DISC model and do not norm their assessments. It’s very possible that for those tests the results are skewed towards the S style. We only sell and support the Everything DiSC and DiSC Classic assessments, with Everything DiSC being the most accurate.

  17. Karen 5 years ago

    What in the world does “good mixer” mean for item 23?

    • Author
      The team 5 years ago

      I’m not sure what you’re asking. Are you asking about a question on an Everything DiSC or the DiSC Classic assessment?

  18. Teresa 5 years ago

    Can someone low in Dominance be a successful manager/leader?

    • Author
      The team 5 years ago

      Of course. However they will need to learn to flex into the D style at times, just as a leader high in D will have to learn to flex into the other seven styles if they want to be effective. Learn more about the 8 DiSC dimensions of leadership.

  19. Rose 5 years ago

    I’m very confused by this. I took the test last year and was a CD. Now I was required to take it again through work and have a D with a tie between I and S, with C being lower, but still pretty close to I and S. So what the heck am I? A DIS? My I, S and C are all really close to one another.

    • Author
      The team 5 years ago

      Did you take the Everything DiSC assessment? If you took someone else’s version I can’t comment. Most aren’t valid assessments. Since the DISC model is not covered by copyright, many people have created simple tests that give you a letter. One of those tests might give you a D and another might give you a C. If both the assessments you took were Everything DiSC products (look for the little i), I suggest asking your employer to show you the Everything DiSC Supplement for Facilitator report and go through that with you. It will give you a deeper dive into how you scored on each scale. It is possible for you to have one dominate style with two extra priorities. See and

  20. Rachel J 4 years ago

    So I’ve known I’m an infp for awhile and so much of it fits and makes sense to me.

    For work I recently took a DiSC assessment. I typed as a high C. I must say a “C” type seems contradictory to an INFP in many ways. First off Cs like facts -which I do but my feelings and intuition are just as important to me. Cs are rarely emotional unless under extreme stress. Um I’m emotional right now just sipping coffee and enjoying life lol.
    I’m wondering how do I reconcile these differences. The problem is I don’t see myself as any of the other DiSC types. When I’m at work I’m best when I’m focusing on details and completing tasks- which is very C but sometimes I daydream, feel emotional, have “gut instincts” etc.

    I guess I’m kinda bummed that I’m a C because due to my infp nature I think I’m a pretty lousy C. I mean if I was an engineer with a istp/istj I’d be a rockstar C. Compiling useful accurate data all day long.
    I guess my question is how can a caring emotional intuitive idealistic iconoclast be an excellent worker with a “C” type? Do I try to focus on the strengths of a C or attempt to become more like a D (intuition) or an S (caring emotional) type? I scored equally on D and S. I scored pretty low on “I” and don’t see the need to bolster those traits as that is very obviously not my style.

    PS I work as a registered nurse but have been offered a management position at my facility.

    • Author
      The team 4 years ago

      Being a C isn’t all about data and accuracy. It’s about valuing these, but it also includes skepticism, which you seem to display in your comment. I don’t think there’s anything in DiSC that measures emotional feeling or it’s depth. An i might be more expressive, but not necessarily feel more emotions. A C can experience strong emotions, but is less likely to display them publicly.

      You say you are a “high” C and that’s not something we talk about with Everything DiSC. We talk about how close your dot is to the center or the edge, and about how inclined you are towards your style. See DiSC® dot and priorities explained.

      Perhaps you took DiSC Classic. The Everything DiSC assessments are 32% more accurate and the results might be more satisfying. If you took a DISC test not published by Wiley then we really can’t offer any insights into your results.

      As to how you can be an excellent worker with a C style, I think that’s something you might want to talk with your supervisor or a coach about.

  21. Toby 4 years ago

    How common is it for two individuals to have the exact same read-out?

    • Author
      The team 4 years ago

      It’s not commonly seen in a group, but it’s certainly statistically possible. It would be interesting to see if your Everything DiSC Supplement for Facilitators report is also exactly the same.

  22. Julia 4 years ago

    Is there a way to redo the test anytime soon? My results were completely off, I feel like maybe it was because I picked neutral a lot since I didn’t know which applied to me. I want to take it again with the opinions of someone I know well.

    • Author
      The team 4 years ago

      Where did you purchase your profile? If you took DiSC Classic you might want to take Everything DiSC Workplace instead since it uses a different questionnaire model–one that’s easier to answer with confidence.

      Did you discuss your results with a trained facilitator? Perhaps a facilitator could help you better understand your results.

      It’s unlikely that your DiSC provider give you another one for free, but you can always ask.

  23. Ana 4 years ago

    Could you be a DS with an C shadow? Is that possible?

    • Author
      The team 4 years ago

      Not sure what you mean by “shadow.” You might want to read What happened to my style: iC or DS? Everything DiSC doesn’t produce anyone with a DS style. You might be a DC with an additional priority in S.

  24. Rabbit 3 years ago

    Is it possible to score high on all aspects of DISC? I remember asking my facilitator this qn back when I was in secondary school. She told me that it’s impossible. The max is just 3. But oddly enough, I did score high in all 4. What’s that supposed to mean? I’ve checked almost everywhere on the internet and still can’t find anything on this. Only one blog that mentioned that ultimately we all had 4 of them just a matter of which is higher or lower… funny enough, I have both the highs and lows of all 4. I am high D/C when I am low I/S and high I/S when I’m low D/C . I do literally change with the people I’m with. Like when in family and school I am very different.

    I am very high C because I’m a perfectionist and someone that gets stucks so much with detail but I am also someone that is stubborn and sticks with my opinions and what I want. I know what I want and make sure I bring that across too.

    I am also someone that dislikes conflicts and confrontations and would choose to be harmonious with people however I will speak up and stand up for what I believe is not right and I do take charge/am initiative when no one else steps up. So I’m actually really darn confused with this thing. I took it 7 yrs ago and now. Still the same answer. The answers will go up and down but ultimately I still have all 4 on highs and lows.

    Do let me know if you have the answer. Thanks!

    • Rabbit 3 years ago

      I would also like you to know that I love speaking with strangers and am very friendly. However when I’m in groups I become very quiet and prefer not to talk or interact with anyone. I am also very impatient and firm/fierce when teaching someone something. I do know that my tendency is to lead more than follow. However if someone else is a better leader than I don’t mind following either. Otherwise I’d choose to shut down completely and just do my own thing. Although I have a tendency to get distracted by my surroundings , I am also very observant of how others react around me. People have said that I pay attention to detail a lot. However I’m also very much big pictured looking at the vision and the ultimate result.

      Or may I base my DISC profile result on what types of people I like more? I do tend to like those with High S and High I more… does that mean my natural preference is High D/C or C/D? I am super friendly and warm though. Most people would say that about me. They’ve told me themselves that I’m not the cold type. I’m only more cold/quiet when I’m actually thinking really seriously about something/have something to focus/work on or when I’m seriously upset with something. This is what I know so far.

    • Author
      The team 3 years ago

      I think you need to take Everything DiSC Workplace and work with a consultant who has been certified in Everything DiSC Workplace. Ask for a copy of the Everything DiSC Workplace Supplement for Facilitators. Then go over it together.

      It is possible to have five priorities.

  25. James Sundquist 3 years ago

    Can you tell me the first four questions in the DISC profile and how many total questions?
    Thank you.

    • Author
      The team 3 years ago

      Everything DiSC uses computerized adaptive testing (CAT) so your first four questions will likely differ from someone else’s. It’s an approximately 80-item questionnaire (again the questions and their number differ because of CAT). You’re scored on 8 scales. You can learn more at DiSC Research, Reliability and Validity Studies.

  26. mickey 3 years ago

    my disc assessment put me smack dab in the middle! equal all the way through. is this possible? if so, what would that mean?

    • Author
      The team 3 years ago

      Every spot of the circle is statistically possible. I’d ask whomever gave you the assessment if they can also get you a copy of the Everything DiSC Supplemental Report for you to look at. That and your Everything DiSC profile should explain what this placement means for you.

  27. KGS 3 years ago

    Can I take the DiSC profile as an individual unaffiliated with a group or organization? Where do I get access to purchase a single test?

  28. Ryan Gottfredson 3 months ago

    Question: If you are further out on the circle, does that mean that one is less able to (1) flex your own communication style and (2) flex to the communication style of others?

  29. Michelle Dur 3 weeks ago

    I scored in the 90’s as a very high . The other 3 categories both adaptive and natural ranged from 35 to 40. Being level in three areas under 40, but very high I, does that make for a good manager? What does that mean?

    • Author
      The team 3 weeks ago

      We can’t comment because you didn’t take an Everything DiSC assessment. Wiley, the publisher of Everything DiSC, has found no evidence for a natural and an adaptive styles. Being a good manager is not reliant on one’s style. I suggest either taking a valid DISC assessment like Everything DiSC Workplace or speaking with whomever gave you your test for more insight into what your score means.

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