1. What is NBI®?


The Neethling Brain Instruments (NBI®) were developed after extensive research on left/right brain functions and are primarily based on the Split-brain theory by Dr. Roger Sperry which won Nobel Prize in 1981. Dr. Kobus Neethling, under the research guidance of Prof. Paul Torrance of the University of Georgia, first developed the NBI® for adults and then expanded his battery of Whole Brain Instruments which are available for children of four years to adults. More than 200,000 adults and children from a number of countries have been profiled by means of the NBI®.


  1. Who is Dr. Kobus Neethling?


Dr. Kobus Neethling is the founder and President of the South African Creativity Foundation and the Kobus Neethling Group. He holds 6 University degrees (Cape Town, Potchefstroom and Georgia USA), including two Masters Degrees, a Doctorate and Post Doctorate (Cum Laude) on the identification and development of Creative Behaviour.


He is the developer of the Neethling Brain Instruments (NBI®). He has received worldwide recognition for the contribution of these instruments which have made way towards unique insights into the self, creativity and change.


He is an award winning, internationally renowned speaker in the field of creativity. He was included in the ‘500 Leaders of Influence’ by the American Biographical Institute. He is also the author of more than 70 books and has written and presented many television series.




  1. How reliable is NBI?


One of the measures we use for reliability in testing is the test- retest reliability. This measures the likelihood of a result being repeated by the same person after a specific interval. The test-retest reliability of the NBI®, as researched in July 2004 with an 8 month interval between the tests, was as follows for each quadrant in the NBI® profile:

L1 0.851

L2 0.840

R1 0.867

R2 0.918


  1. What are the applications of NBI?


The NBI® can help in understanding partners, improving family relationships, developing better understanding and conflict management. The two NBI® student instruments can help with subject and career choices at an early stage and increase the likelihood of personal success and satisfaction.


  1. Does Whole Brain Thinking has its application in education too?


Certainly! A number of schools have had great success with adopting whole brain teaching and learning strategies. The possibility of combining the results from the teachers, students, and parenting NBI® profiles is currently being considered by a number of future oriented schools.


  1. How do you score the NBI® to produce the profile?


The NBI® can be completed on-line and the results produced and the profiles printed from any computer anywhere in the world which has access to the internet and a printer. There are a number of factors involved in completing and scoring the NBI®. There is no need for any special software and you won’t be tied to one scoring computer.


  1. Does my profile change over time?


This depends on the individual – it’s quite possible and perfectly natural for people to change their view about the World as they grow older, experience traumatic events in life or have a life changing experience.


  1. What is the scope of learning and development after completion of the Thinking Preference Profile and the Personality Inventory?


The NBI® measures thinking preferences and presents the results as a profile in 4 quadrants, with each quadrant divided into two dimensions. Thinking preferences and personality are different constructs, with the basic differences best explained by looking at this pyramid or ‘iceberg’ diagram:


The black line is the water line – with most of the iceberg below the water. Most of our human characteristics are also hidden from view. Just our behavior is visible above the water line. As well as being instantly observable, behaviour is also instantly changeable – you can stop doing one thing and start another.


As you go down the chart – deeper under the water – the characteristics become more fixed. For example, most psychologists and researchers seem to fairly agree that around 70 to 80% of thinking preference is environmentally determined, with only 20 to 30% being hereditary. However, personality seems to be more ‘fixed’ than thinking preferences. As you can also see from the chart, thinking preference is the closest to and therefore has a more immediate impact on behavior which leads to lot of scope for development.


Given that thinking preferences are more changeable and more closely related to behavior the NBI™ would therefore be the better choice in a learning environment. Whereas, in a Personality Inventory, there is only assessment where there is no scope of learning and development.