The Type Six Student: The Questioning Friend

Driver:  Fear of the countless unnameable risks
Motivation: to be supported and secure       
Focus: uncertainties, risks, dangers, the unknown
Strategy: seek guidance from those they trust 


  • sometimes hardworking, responsible, loyal
  • sometimes ambivalent, doubting, unreliable
  • commitment level depends on how much they trust
  • behaviour reacts to trust and anxiety

Communication Style

  • gregarious and likeable
  • sceptical, cautionary, ask questions, play devil’s advocate
  • “yes, but”, “the problem here is…”
  • often nervous speaking in front of others

Learning Style

  • questions, questions, questions (red herrings!)
  • detailed, rational analysis
  • prefer structure, framework, justified rules
  • good at finding problems or deviations

Work Ethic:  To Trust or Not to Trust?

  • initially wary of teachers and their authority
  • question inconsistencies, assumptions
  • seek to understand teacher’s experience, bias, preferences
  • uncertainty breeds anxiety, worry
  • want to observe first, get assumptions out of the way before participating
  • over-questioning leads to analysis paralysis
  • self-doubt leads to procrastination

Ideal Classroom

  • values of social support, reliability, responsibility
  • atmosphere of trust
  • predictable, structured
  • questions are welcomed and answered

Personality Cluster

Wings:  Observer (5) and Enthusiast (7)

Stress Arrow:  Achiever (3)

Workaholism or spaced out and apathetic. Take on role to feel more secure. Cover up with ‘spin’. 

Security Arrow:  Mediator (9)

  • Encourage them to explore empathy with others rather than suspicion of them
  • Be trustworthy
  • Affirm their positives to alleviate self-doubt

>  The Type Seven Student

>  Enneagram Personalities of Students

>  Home Page

with thanks to Rob Fitzel


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